Man accused of fatal hit-and-run had 8 prior DWI convictions

Man accused of fatal hit-and-run had 8 prior DWI convictions
Anthony Thompson (Source: New Hanover Co. Jail)
Anthony Thompson (Source: New Hanover Co. Jail)

NEW HANOVER COUNTY, NC (WECT) – A hit and run Sunday night resulted in the death of one man, with the driver facing a list of charges including second-degree murder.

John Colville, employed with Wayne's Towing, was helping someone change a tire on Carolina Beach Road near the intersection of McQuillan Drive, according to the State Highway Patrol. Troopers responded to the scene just before 6 p.m.

"I had called to get a tow truck driver to come," said a woman who called 911. "There was a drive-by that hit the tow truck driver. He's on the street. He's laying on the ground - he got hit."

At the beginning of the five-minute 911 call, the caller said Colville appeared to be awake and breathing, but within a few minutes that all changed.

"He's not breathing and there's no pulse," said the caller. "I think he's dead. Oh my gosh."

The 911 dispatch operator walked the caller through instructions on how to give Colville CPR until officials arrived.

Trooper Lee with SHP said Anthony Thompson was driving a white truck when he hit Colville on the side of the road. Thompson kept driving until Wilmington Police stopped him near Legion Stadium, according to Lee.

Thompson's employer said the truck used in the accident had been taken from his business without permission. He plans to file charges Monday against Thompson for taking the vehicle.

The driver is charged with the following:

- Second-degree murder

- Felony hit and run

- Driving While Impaired

- Habitual D.W.I.

- Open container

- Failure to move for emergency vehicles

- Driving while licensed revoked

Thompson will be held in lieu of a $1 million bond. He made his first appearance in court Monday morning. His next court date is scheduled for November 29.

According to District Attorney Ben David, Thompson had been charged with leaving the scene of an accident before.

Officials say Thompson has also had eight prior DWI convictions.

Thompson's employer said he was unaware of his prior convictions and that in the ten years of working for him did not display erratic behavior.

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