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Coroner releases autopsy results after man crashed car, jumped from Lake Hartwell bridge

Investigators say a driver died after crashing a car and jumping from a bridge into Lake...
Investigators say a driver died after crashing a car and jumping from a bridge into Lake Hartwell.(Viewer photo)
Published: Jun. 7, 2022 at 6:17 AM EDT|Updated: Jun. 9, 2022 at 1:16 PM EDT
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FAIR PLAY, S.C. (FOX Carolina) - An investigation is underway after a man’s body was recovered from Lake Hartwell near the South Carolina and Georgia state line Monday night.

The coroner said at around 10 p.m., the Franklin County Sheriff’s Office in Georgia initiate a traffic stop on I-85 near mile marker 169 for a car driving at approximately 125 miles per hour.

We’re told the car was a red 2014 Dodge Charger registered to a woman in Greenwood, South Carolina.

At the state line, deputies said on the bridge which crosses Lake Hartwell, or Tugaloo River, the car hit another car and then hit the bridge guard rail. The man driving the Charger got out and jumped from the bridge into the lake on the South Carolina side.

He was later identified as 31-year-old Akeem O. Lukie of Greenwood.

Officials said they saw Lukie trying to swim in the water, called out to him and tried to throw him a rope to rescue him, but he was last seen going beneath the bridge. Lukie’s body was found hours later at 2 a.m. in a water depth of 26 feet.

Lukie has distinctive tattoos which were used for identification confirmation. Investigators determined the car was owned by Lukie’s wife.

After an autopsy Wednesday, the coroner determined Lukie died from drowning. His death was ruled accidental.

The coroner’s office said samples are being submitted to SLED for toxicology analysis.

Stay tuned as we work to learn more.

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