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Grigsby Chapel wreck sends one to hospital, one to jail

Knox County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrested a Chapel Pointe man following a traffic accident investigation Tuesday night, March 10.

Officers Jeremy Wise and David McCroskey were dispatched to Grigsby Chapel Road to investigate an auto accident with injury.

Upon arrival, the officers reported that an interview was conducted with Salvador Gaudiano, 62, the driver of one of the vehicles, who “had an odor of alcoholic beverage about his person, was unsteady on his feet and had red, watery, bloodshot eyes.

“[Gaudiano] was intoxicated to such a degree he was unaware he was involved in an accident,” Wise reported.

An arrest warrant was issued for Gaudiano after the suspect failed a field sobriety test and refused to submit to a implied consent chemical test, Wise reported.

Benjamin Francis, 18, the driver of the other vehicle, told farragutpress he was returning home from work at Quizno’s restaurant at about 9:45 p.m. when the accident occurred.

Francis, a Sugarwood resident, said, “I was driving home on Grigsby Chapel Road. ... It was my third day on the job” when the accident happened.

“I saw his car as I approached [Chapel Pointe Lane] and I thought he was going to stop at the stop sign,” Francis said. “Instead, he kept coming and ran through the sign, in front of me. I tried to avoid him but I hit him.”

Francis added that he and a witness, Rachel Orme, who was driving behind Francis, both called 911.

“The police arrived about two minutes later,” Francis said.

“I tried to get [Gaudiano] out of his car, but the door was locked and I couldn’t get it open,” he said. “You can never tell what might happen after a car accident” indicating that he feared [Gaudiano’s] vehicle might catch fire.

Wise and McCroskey reported that Francis was driving west in a 1994 blue Honda Civic on Grigsby Chapel Road when Gaudiano pulled out in front of him in his 2005 gray Ford Expedition allegedly causing the accident.

Francis was treated by Rural/Metro ambulance personnel before being transported to Baptist Hospital West where he was treated for neck, chest and leg injuries.

Francis was later released.

Gaudiano was treated for a lacerated finger before being transported to jail, where he faces charges of a first offense driving under the influence and an implied consent violation.


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