Former state rep. killed in hit-and-run on Fort Henry Drive by a

Former state rep. killed in hit-and-run on Fort Henry Drive by alleged drunk driver

Posted: Updated:
James D. Hamm, Jr. James D. Hamm, Jr.
Former Tennessee State Rep. Michael K. Locke Former Tennessee State Rep. Michael K. Locke
KINGSPORT, TN (WJHL) -

Update:

A man who faces numerous charges, including vehicular homicide by intoxication, had his hearing reset today for July 10 in Kingsport General Sessions Court.

James D. Hamm faces charges of vehicular homicide by intoxication, driving under the influence, leaving the scene of a motor vehicle collision involving a fatality and failure to maintain proper control of a vehicle.

On Monday night, former Tennessee State Rep. Michael K. Locke, 61, was killed after he was hit by Hamm's car while hanging a campaign sign on Fort Henry Drive.


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A former Tennessee State Representative was killed Monday night, after he was hit by a car while hanging a campaign sign on Fort Henry Drive.

According to a Kingsport Police Department news release, Michael K. Locke, 61, was the victim of a hit-and-run collision just before 8 p.m. near the Sonic Drive-in, 3845 Fort Henry Drive.

Police said a 2003 GMC Yukon XL driven by James D. Hamm, Jr., 44, 304 Millington Court of Kingsport, reportedly veered from the traffic lane onto the shoulder, hitting Locke with the right side of the vehicle and knocked him off of the bridge and into a ravine 20-feet below.

Locke and another man were on the shoulder hanging a campaign sign when the hit-and-run occurred.

According to the release, Hamm drove away from the scene heading north on Fort Henry Drive and then turned onto John B. Dennis Highway.

Hamm then reportedly took the Memorial Boulevard exit, but stopped on the shoulder of the exit ramp.  A person in another vehicle suspected something was wrong, stopped near Hamm’s vehicle and took his keys from the vehicle until KPD officers arrived.

Police said Hamm showed signs of being intoxicated.

Hamm was charged with vehicular homicide by intoxication, driving under the influence, leaving the scene of a motor vehicle collision involving a fatality and failure to maintain proper control of a vehicle.

He was taken to the Kingsport City Jail where he was held without bond pending his arraignment in Sessions Court Tuesday morning.

A KPD Traffic Unit and Criminal Investigations Division investigation revealed that Hamm had stopped at a liquor store on Fort Henry Drive, made a purchase and then left the store.

When he left the store, Hamm reportedly drove forward over the curb, across a sidewalk and into the exterior wall of the business.

No damage was done to the building, but a pedestal ash tray was crushed when it was hit by Hamm’s vehicle.

An investigation into the hit-and-run is ongoing.Hamm was arrested and charged last Thursday night for a DUI, after he was reportedly driving on Pickens Road around 9 p.m., crossed the center line and hit another car.

According to a Kingsport Police Department crash report, Hamm left the scene of the crash but was stopped by Sullivan County deputies about 100 yards away.

Anyone with information about the incident at Colonial Height Package Store, the fatal collision, the location where Hamm stopped or information about any of his driving Monday, is asked to call KPD Traffic Unit at 224-2750.

The Committee to Elect Bud Hulsey State Representative issued a news release Tuesday afternoon which said "We are deeply saddened and shocked by the sudden, tragic death of Mike Locke. This is clearly a loss felt by the entire community. Right now, our concern and prayers is with ... his wife, Debbie, his son, Hunter, brother, Dr. Bill Locke, brother, David Locke, and his extended family, as we remember the legacy of one of the finest men to ever grace our community."

Hulsey will reportedly make additional comments at a later time.

On the Hot Dog Hut-Bloomingdale Facebook page, a comment was posted about Locke's death, which said “Please pray for the family and friends of the original Hot Dog Hut founder, Mike Locke! Due to a devastating incident, he has went to Heaven. Without Mike’s help Hot Dog Hut Bloomingdale wouldn’t be here today. We will never forget his help and kindness throughout the years."

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