Head-on crash kills man

By Jeff Whitten

Staff Photos by Janet Rail

Tony E. Sweat, of Savannah, was killed as a passenger in this Nissan Altima, top, driven by Deborah K. Haymans, of Sardis, after the vehicle was hit by this Jeep Wrangler driven by Douglas W. Sims, of Michie.


A two-car crash near Michie early Saturday morning killed one person and injured two others.

Tony E. Sweat, age 52, of Savannah, was killed in the crash, according to a motor vehicle fatality report provided by the Tennessee Department of Safety. 

Sweat was a passenger in a 2003 Nissan Altima driven by Deborah K. Haymans, 51, of Sardis.

He was killed and Haymans was injured when her vehicle was hit by a 1999 Jeep Wrangler driven by Douglas W. Sims, 50, of Michie, who was also injured.

Sims’ vehicle was traveling westbound on State Highway 57, when it crossed the centerline and struck Haymans’ vehicle head on, according to the report.

Sims was suspected of being under the influence of alcohol and was tested for it, according to the report. 

As of press time, no charges had been filed, according to Lt. Brad Wilbanks, Tennessee Highway Patrol Jackson District Public Information Officer. 

The crash is still under investigation by the THP Critical Incident Response Team and the Criminal Investigations Division. 

Haymans and Sweat were not suspected of being under the influence.

Sims and Haymans were wearing safety belts, but Sweat was not.

Trooper Jason Kirk of the Tennessee Highway Patrol responded to the crash.

According to the report, a safety restraint could have, in the officer’s opinion, saved Sweat’s life.

Haymans was airlifted to the Regional Medical Center in Memphis, and Sims was airlifted to Jackson Madison County General. Haymans was in good condition as of press time. No information was available on Sims’ condition, but the hospital said he was not a patient there as of Tuesday morning.

Troopers at the scene were Lt. David Killingsworth, Trooper Kennie F. Lamberth and Trooper Jason Wade Kirk.