Motorcycle passenger killed in Downtown Connector wreck identified

An alleged drunk driver on the Downtown Connector struck a couple on a motorcycle early Sunday morning, killing the female passenger, Atlanta police said.

The Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Office Monday morning identified the woman killed as Ellie Norris, 33, whose hometown has not been confirmed.

According to police, just before 3 a.m., Jessica M. Johnson was driving a 2012 Hyundai Sonata on Interstate 75/85 South and apparently tried to merge onto I-20 when she rear-ended a 2013 Suzuki GSX carrying a man and a woman. Johnson’s car clipped the motorcycle, and the female passenger was knocked off by the impact and subsequently run over by Johnson, according to authorities. The motorcycle hit the median, but the unidentified driver survived the impact, then went over to the Sonata, which pinned his passenger to the pavement.

He called the woman’s name, according to police, but when she did not respond, he fled the scene.

Meanwhile, Johnson, whose age and hometown have not yet been released, blew a .209 on a preliminary breath test, according to police. That is more than twice the 0.08 legal alcohol limit to operate a car in Georgia.

Johnson was taken to the Fulton County Jail and charged with first-degree vehicle homicide, DUI, reckless driving and following too closely.

The alleged motorcycle driver, Saahir Salahuddin, 37, was taken into custody at Grady Memorial Hospital, where he was seeking treatment for possible injuries late Sunday morning, police said. He was charged with first-degree homicide by vehicle, hit and run and theft by receiving a stolen auto.

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