Oliver Baylen Cope, an 18-year-old University of Georgia freshman, has been charged with murder after he intentionally drove his car into a Taco Bell, killing a 23-year-old woman.
On September 28, Cope crashed his car into a Taco Bell restaurant, injuring several people and killing 23-year-old. The 18-year-old drove his Dodge Challenger into the Swainsboro restaurant’s dining area and pinned a child underneath. According to Swainsboro police Chief Randy J. Ellison, police allege that Cope drove his car into the Taco Bell intentionally.
At least five people were sent to the hospital for treatment, while 23-year-old Macy Lynn Mullis died shortly after her arrival to the hospital. Two other victims were flown to an Augusta hospital due to the severity of their injuries. Mullis, a corrections officer, is survived by her husband.
According to a University of Georgia spokesman, Cope was enrolled as a freshman majoring in biology. Police say they have not established a motive, saying they “have no idea” why Cope drove into the restaurant, as he knew none of the customers or the employees inside.
Just before 4 p.m. Thursday, Ellison said 18-year-old Oliver Baylen Cope of Old River Road North in Bulloch County, drove a Dodge Charger across five lanes of traffic at a high rate of speed, crashing into the restaurant, killing Macy Lynn Purvis, 23, of Adrian.
A 7-year-old boy and a 1-year-old boy were trapped underneath the car, Ellison said. The children’s mother, Sara Rose Kersey, 24, of Adrian, also was seriously injured, as well as a man, Javier Rodrigues of Swainsboro. Rodrigues, 42, and the 7-year-old boy both remain in critical condition Friday, while Kersey and the 1-year-old are in stable condition, Ellison said. All were taken to a hospital in Augusta.
Cope walked out of the crash, looked around at the chaos, and approached a Swainsboro police officer to identify himself as the driver, Ellison said.
Bob Taylor, a spokesman for the university, said Cope enrolled as a freshman at the university as a biology major, though is not clear if he is still registered.
Swainsboro police and the Georgia State Patrol are still investigating the incident.