MEMPHIS, Tenn. — A popular photojournalist is dead following a hit-and-run crash involving an alleged intoxicated driver.
36-year-old Michael Morrison, a photojournalist at ABC24 News, died after another car crashed into him, sending his vehicle into a barrier outside Fergeson’s apartment.
Demarkus Ferguson wiped away tears as he recalled the horrific hit-and-run crash Tuesday morning at the intersection of Cooper and Southern Avenue.
“I saw the gentleman slumped over, unconscious, still breathing, so my first mind was to try to grab the car door and to get him out, to help him,” Ferguson said “I didn’t want the guy to pass away. I wanted to try and help save his life.”
Ferguson said he also saw a man, later identified as 25-year-old Jason Patterson. Memphis Police say Patterson was driving the car that hit Morrison’s vehicle broadside.
“I yelled out to him, ‘ Hey, are you ok?’ and he said, ‘Yeah, I’ve already made the phone call’ and he sounded, he wasn’t sober at all,” he said. “As he finished speaking to me, he went back on the inside of his car, grabbed what he could grab, and fleed the scene.”
According to police, Patterson was found walking more than a mile away from the crash site near the intersection of Lamar and Willett. He was given a field sobriety test and arrested.
“Everyone who was outside watching had realized that he worked in the news and it was pretty sad. He was alive when they put him in the ambulance and they tried to keep him alive,” said Simeona Cuttingham, who lives near the crash site.
Morrison died a day after the crash.
Patterson was charged with DUI, public intoxication, violation of financial responsibility, and leaving the scene of an accident. He was released on his own recognizance.
Michael Morrison leaves behind a wife and two young daughters.