Drunk Driver Going Wrong Way On I-24 Injures 6 People

Bonilla, 25, Of East Ridge Did Not Have Driver's License

Saturday, July 23, 2011

A driver going the wrong way on Interstate 24 early Saturday morning hit two vehicles, sending six people to local hospitals.

Police said he was drunk and driving without a license.

Facing numerous charges is Jesus Morales Bonilla, 25, of 4634 Carr Terrace, East Ridge.

He is charged with four counts of vehicular assault, DUI, violating the Implied Consent law, six counts of reckless endangerment, leaving the scene of an accident with injury or death and driving without a license.

At approximately 3:46 a.m., East Ridge Police and Fire/Rescue responded to I-24 near the S. Seminole overpass in reference to a motor vehicle crash. A black Dodge Ram driven by an Hispanic male was traveling the wrong way on eastbound I-24 hitting a Pontiac Torrent head on.

A Hyundai following the Pontiac was unable to avoid the crash and was also involved.

An East Ridge Police officer traveling eastbound observed the crash and stopped to render aid. The officer observed the Hispanic male attempting to leave the scene. The officer was able to apprehend the suspect as other officers were arriving on the scene.

East Ridge Fire/Rescue personnel working for more than an hour had to use the Jaws-of-Life to extricate at least one victim from the Pontiac.

Due to the extreme heat conditions one firefighter was treated for possible heat exhaustion.

Those transported to area hospitals included four adults and two children.

Lifeguard EMS, Memorial EMS, and Angel EMS transported victims to Erlanger Hospital, Children’s Hospital, and Parkridge East Hospital.

The two vehicles involved in the crash were family members traveling together from Kentucky to Florida.

East Ridge Police traffic investigators initially were unable to identify the Hispanic man who caused the crash because he provided two different identifications with different names on each one.

Bonilla is scheduled to appear in East Ridge Municipal Court on Tuesday at 5 p.m.


Corker Honors Life Of David Abshire

Senator Bob Corker released the following statement on the passing of David M. Abshire, former U.S. ambassador to NATO and co-founder of the Center for Strategic and International Studies (CSIS): "I am saddened to hear of the passing of a great Chattanoogan, Ambassador David Abshire. From his distinguished service in the military to his time as ambassador to NATO and as ... (click for more)

Kelvon Dozier Faces Multiple Charges After Armed Burglary On Sunnyside Avenue

Police were called to a home on Sunnyside Avenue after the owner drove up and saw three men leaving the house and running into an SUV. The owner was also able to get part of the tag number. When he told police, they realized his description matched a vehicle they had pulled over earlier. Because of this, police were able to identify the driver and his address. The owner also ... (click for more)

A Vote For Education Is Critical In Tennessee

In a state where just 28 percent of eighth graders are proficient in math and 33 percent are proficient in reading according to national assessments, education is deserving of more attention in 2014 elections. Across the country, more parents are making informed decisions about their child’s education, but for Volunteer State parents without resources, choices are difficult to come ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: Saban: ‘Ratings Don’t Matter’

When the first College Football Playoff rankings were released earlier this week, Alabama football coach Nick Saban got it right on the button when he shrugged, “I don't even care, to be honest with you." "To me, none of it matters, What does it matter?” he laughed at the Tide’s No. 6 ranking. “I mean, it only matters where you end up at the end. So what matters to us is how ... (click for more)

Owls Beat McMinn, 30-12, To Complete Unbeaten Regular Season

Undefeated. Sounds nice, huh. After a sluggish first half that produced only three points on a Laszlo Toser field goa., third-ranked Ooltewah came to life in the third quarter, riddled McMinn County’s defense with three Kelvin Leon touchdown passes in the third quarter and went on to beat the Cherokees, 30-12, at James N. Monroe Stadium to secure the school’s third unbeaten ... (click for more)

Notre Dame Clobbers Grundy Co. For 7-AA Title

Notre Dame coach Charles Fant is always hoping that his Fighting Irish football team can get off to a fast start. He never thought it would be as quick as what he saw Thursday night at Jim Eberle Field. With a District 7-AA championship on the line on an evening when they honored all of the fall senior athletes, a football game turned into a track meet and eventually a victory ... (click for more)