A Clayton man was arrested after the State Highway Patrol said he crashed a rental car while speeding on the US 70 Clayton Bypass then fled from the scene on foot. Emergency crews responded to the single vehicle accident reported at 11:52pm Saturday on the Bypass near the Ranch Road interchange.
According to troopers, James Merridth Rogers, 23, of Clayton was traveling eastbound in a 2021 Nissan passenger car when he ran off the roadway down an embankment striking several trees. Rogers and a 24 year-old female passenger, Hannah Brooke Venable of Middlesex, left the scene on foot after the crash.
A passing motorist saw the collision and reported the accident.
State troopers were joined by a Johnston County sheriff’s K-9 in the search for the driver and passenger. A deputy found them about a mile away on Ranch Road. The pair was returned to the scene of the crash. Both refused medical treatment.
Authorities said Rogers was traveling at 90 miles per hour in a 70mph zone at the time of the crash.
Trooper H.D. Nazal charged Rogers with driving while impaired, hit and run, failure to maintain lane control and a seat belt violation. Rogers registered 0.09 on the Breathalyzer, according to an accident report.
Venable, the passenger, was charged with hit and run, and a seat belt violation.