Immigration status of driver in Augusta fatal wreck questioned

AUGUSTA | Officials are investigating the immigration status of a man accused of causing a traffic death.


Juan Jesus Castillo-Reyes, 30, remains in the Columbia County jail on charges of first-degree vehicular homicide, reckless driving, failure to signal when turning or changing lanes and driving while unlicensed.

The Augusta Chronicle reports U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement seeks to determine if Castillo-Reyes is in the country legally.

Castillo-Reyes initially faced a second-degree vehicular homicide charge, but it was upgraded to first-degree because the wreck occurred in a construction zone. He’s being held without bail.

Police say Castillo-Reyes was driving fast when his pickup truck crashed into the rear of a Nissan Altima driven by Alexander Wayne Earles Monday. Earles was stopped on Interstate 20 for construction.

Three others, including Castillo-Reyes, were injured.