NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) - Bassist Robert Todd Harrell of the rock band 3 Doors Down has been charged with vehicular homicide by intoxication after an interstate crash claimed the life of another motorist in the Nashville area, police said.
The 41-year-old musician remained jailed early Sunday in connection with the fatal accident late Friday night on Interstate 40 that left 47-year-old Paul Howard Shoulders Jr. dead, the Metropolitan Nashville Police Department said.
FOX10 went to Ecatawpa, Miss., the musician's hometown, and spoke to a number of Harrell's friends and family who did not want to officially comment on the incident. Many people in the community say they are saddened by the situation.
"He's not the only one that went through that. A lot of people do. Especially went they hit fame. They go to drinking, and doing drugs and stuff… partying. I guess they forget about real life," said Gary Hill.
Debra Manning said she is Harrell's cousin, she hopes he keeps his head up. Manning says Harrell helped a lot of people financially during Hurricane Katrina and hopes the community supports him during his troubled time.
"It just hurts because he has done some good for the community, the whole group," said Harrell. "It's just a sad situation."
The band, which formed in Mississippi in the '90s and touts a straight-up rock 'n' roll sound with such hits as "Away From The Sun" and "Kryptonite," did not elaborate on the statement.
Fatality in Tennesee
A police statement said a preliminary investigation showed that Harrell was driving west at a high rate of speed in the Nashville suburb of Hermitage when his car clipped a pickup truck driven by Shoulders. Police said the pickup then went out of control, struck a guardrail, went down an embankment and overturned. Shoulders was ejected.
Authorities said Harrell's car hit a retaining wall and stopped about a quarter mile away.
Police said Harrell showed signs of impairment when he underwent field sobriety tasks, adding in their statement that "he acknowledged consuming hard cider and taking prescription Lortab" and Xanax.
Shoulders, who was not wearing a seat belt, was pronounced dead at a Nashville hospital, authorities added.
The police statement said Harrell, of Mt. Juliet, also was charged with bringing controlled substances into the jail. Authorities said sheriff's deputies had discovered a plastic bag concealed in his sock that contained eight Xanax pills, 24 Oxycodone pills and four Oxymorphone pills during a search in the booking room.
Early Sunday, a jail official contacted by The Associated Press said Harrell remained in custody in lieu of $100,000 bond. The official, who declined to be identified by name, said Harrell was not available and jail records didn't indicate whether he had an attorney.
The official said Harrell faces a court appearance Thursday morning.
"We are deeply saddened by the passing of Paul Howard Shoulders, Jr. Our hearts and prayers go out to his family and friends at this difficult time," said a statement released on the 3 Doors Down website.
Metropolitan Nashville Police, contacted by the AP, said they would have no further information beyond the statement released on a local government website. Authorities reached at a county sheriff's office said they had no information.
Copyright 2013 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
The trial for Giuseppe Pino LoPorto continues today in Baldwin County. LoPorto, now 80-years-old, faces several sex abuse charges against a child dating back to the early 90s.
FOX10 News has learned William "Eddie" Patrick, captain of Mobile's First police precinct, has been demoted following an internal investigation.
A man who bought a bicycle three weeks ago finds out it was originally stolen, according to the original owner who reported it missing in October.
If you were in the Foley area Thursday, you may have seen a helicopter, police and K-9 units. That’s because a store in Foley was robbed this morning at gunpoint. Eventually, the search was called off. The suspect is still on the loose.
Pastor of Lifeway Community Church Mike McPherson says thieves stole presents that would have been given to needy children.
Skies are mostly clear and the breezy north wind is very noticeable this evening. Daytime highs were only in the mid 50’s today. We are expecting a light freeze tonight along and north of I-10. Lows will be near 32 degrees in Mobile. Upper 20’s are possible well inland.