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Fallen officer's family plans lawsuit


Staff Writer

Monday, January 7, 2019

Lawyers representing the family of a Rocky Mount police officer killed in a crash plan to file a wrongful death lawsuit, according to court documents.

Christopher Driver was killed June 23 when his patrol car crashed into a commercial vehicle stalled in his lane of travel.

Two men were charged with misdemeanor death by motor vehicle. Their cases are currently pending grand jury review.

Derrick Sheffield, 47, and Timmy Earl Dixon, 38, are accused of abandoning a tree-trimming bucket truck at 10:30 p.m. on South Church Street.

Driver’s squad car struck the vehicle and he died of blunt force injuries, according to his death certificate that listed the manner of death to be an accident.

A letter from the Greenville-based Ricci Law Firm, which is attached to the defendants' court records, states the firm is representing Driver's estate and wants to be updated as the cases move forward since the firm plans to file a civil suit.

Attorney Brian Ricci told the Telegram on Friday that he wouldn't discuss details of the firm's legal strategy without first consulting with the Driver family.

The Ricci letter urges the court not to accept any plea deals for lesser charges in the case. The letter doesn't make it clear who the firm plans to sue and Brian Ricci wouldn't answer related questions.

Sheffield and Dixon both bonded out of jail the same day they were taken into custody. Sheffield's bail was set at $5,000 and Dixon's bail was set at $7,000.

In addition to counts of death by motor vehicle and leaving a vehicle unattended, Sheffield also was charged with unauthorized use of a motor vehicle.

The truck was being towed illegally when its brakes failed. The owner of the 1985 Ford bucket truck told police that Sheffield took it without his permission, according to warrants.

Dixon was charged with leaving the scene of a wreck.

Driver was speeding and wasn't wearing his seatbelt, according to the State Highway Patrol, which investigated and made arrests in the case.

Rocky Mount police said Driver was on duty and enroute to a call that the bucket truck was being stolen.

Driver, 27, went to work for the Rocky Mount Police Department in February 2013 and was promoted to senior police officer in 2017.


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Local photographer Joe Pellegrino explores Greenville to create a photographic census of its people.

Crime and Rescue

January 15, 2019

Someone forced their way into a home near Lakeforest Elementary school recently and story property valued at more than $13,000, according to a Greenville Police Department report release on Monday.

The incident took place between 8 a.m. on Friday, Dec. 21, and 10:40 p.m. on Sunday, Jan. 13, in the…

January 15, 2019

A Farmville woman crossed the centerline, ran off the road and struck a telephone pole before overturning, according to a State Highway Patrol report.

The crash took place at 7:09 p.m. on Jan. 4 near Bell Arthur Road and Ballard’s Crossroads Road.

Tori Moore Strickland was traveling west on…


January 13, 2019

ASHEBORO — A man wanted for a Nov. 19 shooting death in Greenville was taken into custody on Saturday by the Randolph County Sheriff’s Office following a short chase on Interstate 73, authorities there reported.

According to a news release from the Randolph office, patrol units were…


January 13, 2019

A Greenville man with a prior DWI conviction was charged again with driving while impaired and a trooper said he had three children in the car with him at the time, according to a weekly review of Pitt County court records.

Dominic Anthony Nocerino, 31, 1795 Heber Hudson Road, was stopped at…


January 12, 2019

Over $3,000 of jewelry and electronics was stolen during a home break-in on Wednesday night, according to a case report released by the Greenville Police Department. 

The incident took place between 4 and 7 p.m. in the 100 block of Fosbury Way, the report said.

The report indicated that the…

January 12, 2019

Greenville Fire-Rescue responded to more than 365 fire and EMS calls from Jan. 3-9. Following is a breakdown:


Jan. 3

■ 1:20 a.m. — medical assist at 2632 Brookridge Circle. Cleared 2:45 a.m.

■ 2:06 a.m. — assist invalid at 1359 S.E. Greenville Blvd. Cleared 2:13 a.m.

■ 5:03 a.…

January 11, 2019

Officers from the Greenville Police Department assisted Greenville Fire-Rescue in responding to a dumpster fire outside a Harris Teeter store on Monday night, according to a report from the GPD. 

The incident took place between 5 a.m. and 5:30 a.m. at the Harris Teeter located at 1400 Charles…

January 10, 2019

Police are investigating two home break-ins, according to case reports released by the Greenville Police Department.

The first incident took place between 9:30 a.m. on Tuesday and 12:30 a.m. on Wednesday in the 1900 block of Hyde Drive.

The report indicated that the home was entered forcibly by…

January 10, 2019

ROCKY MOUNT — Four arrests have been made in one of three weekend homicides in Rocky Mount.

Tracy Lamont Collins Jr., 18; Khalil Jywon Davis, 18; Shymond Kiheem Williams, 17; and a 15-year-old juvenile have been charged with first-degree murder in the shooting death of 20-year-old Mikell…

January 10, 2019

RALEIGH — After one of the deadliest years on record for fire fatalities in North Carolina, Insurance Commissioner and State Fire Marshal Mike Causey urges residents to stay focused on fire safety and prevention in 2019.

In 2018, 133 people lost their lives in North Carolina because of fire…

259 stories in Crime and Rescue. Viewing 1 through 10.
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