• Geoff Belcher--Sea Coast Echo

Man charged with DUI causing death after car hits woman on Hwy. 603


The Sea Coast Echo reported that a Picayune woman died early Saturday morning after being hit by a car on Hwy. 603 and the driver who hit her has been charged with DUI causing death.

Relatives said Kristy May Pate and a friend had been enjoying Cruisin' the Coast and were headed to New Orleans early on Saturday morning, when Pate offered to switch seats with the driver, who was feeling sleepy.

Pate was about to get into the driver's seat when she was hit by a vehicle driven by Shane Michael Hicks, age 30, of Bay St. Louis, officers said.

Shane Michael Hicks

Pate was airlifted to Ochsner Medical Center - Hancock, then flown to University Medical Center in New Orleans, where she was declared brain dead. Both the Bay St. Louis Police Department and Hancock County Sheriff's Office responded to the scene.

Sheriff Ricky Adam said Tuesday "My DUI officer was called after it was suspected (Hicks) was impaired. Both the victim and her passenger had already left the scene, one by helicopter and one by ambulance, so when (the deputy) got there, he talked to the suspect and went throughout the protocol and he determined he was uncooperative. He did a blood warrant, signed by a judge, and followed the right procedures."

Hicks was initially charged with DUI first offense, Adam said, but the charges were upgraded to DUI causing death after Pate was declared dead. He was initially freed on a $500 bond, but will now go back to jail and through the process again on the upgraded charges.


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