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Three airlifted after crash
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Three occupants of a 1996 Chevrolet S-10 pickup involved in a one-vehicle crash on Big Rock Road were airlifted Monday afternoon. According to Trooper Bobby Johnson of the Tennessee Highway Patrol, Christopher Lewis, 31, of McMinnville and Carol Lewis, 34, of Smithville were airlifted to Vanderbilt Medical Center in Nashville, while 31-year-old Johnny Ray of Smithville was flown to Erlanger Hospital in Chattanooga. Johnson said Lewis was traveling north on Big Rock Road when he failed to negotiate a curve, left the roadway on the right side and collided with a tree. Lewis apparently left the vehicle after the wreck and attempted to flee the scene on foot. He was found lying injured on a hillside several hundred feet from the site of the accident. Members of the Smithville-DeKalb County Rescue Squad hurried to the scene and used a Stokes basket to bring the man up a steep embankment and back to the roadway to be treated by DeKalb EMS. The trooper said Lewis was combative and acted belligerent, and appeared to be intoxicated. Carol Lewis had to be extricated from the small back seat of the extended-cab truck by members of the DeKalb County Volunteer Fire Department, while Ray was trapped in the passenger seat. Johnson said charges are pending in the case, which was investigated by Trooper Johnson along with Trooper Adam Cothron, Sergeant Billy Prater, and members of the Critical Incident Response Team of the Tennessee Highway Patrol. The sheriff’s department assisted at the scene as well.