Police Charge Driver With DUI & Involuntary Manslaughter After Fatal I-581 Accident

Picture of accident taken by viewer

Roanoke, VA - State Police officials have filed charges against one of the drivers involved in the fiery crash on 581 in Roanoke that shut down the interstate for hours Wednesday.

State Police say it all started in the northbound lanes just before the Valley View Boulevard exit.

Officials charged Timothy Wellons, 34, of Salem, with DUI and two counts of involuntary manslaughter. Wellons was arrested Wednesday night after being discharged from the hospital.

He now stands accused of being responsible for the fiery pile up that killed Kenneth Graham, 54, of Lexington, North Carolina and Paul Golding, 36, of Salem. The two men were driving the tractor trailers. Both died at the scene.

State Police say Wellons was driving erratically before losing control of his car and hitting a tractor trailer.

The collision caused that truck to go through the median into the southbound lane, where it hit another tractor-trailer head on. Three vehicles behind the southbound semi then ran into it.

Thursday morning, Wellons was arraigned in General District Court in Roanoke where they set his next appearance for June 27.

Right now, crews are still working to repair one lane of the damaged stretch of highway going southbound. All other lanes on I-581 are open.