A white driver who mocked the black Louisiana man he hit and killed while driving will not face any charges in the case.
Sherell Lewis Jr. was cleaning up debris May 29 in southbound lanes of U.S. 171 near Pickering when he was struck and killed by Matthew Martin, who then made racist comments about his victim on social media, reported KPLC-TV.
After the crash Martin, then 18, sent a Snapchat message to a friend saying he had hit “some n*gger,” and he was aware Lewis had died en route to the hospital.
Lewis, a well-known Leesburg barber, was killed on his 31st birthday while clearing trash from the roadway as a safety precaution.
Vernon Parish Sheriff Sam Craft denounced Martin’s posts mocking Lewis but said they did not violate any laws.
Investigators announced Thursday that no charges would be filed against Martin in the fatal crash.
Master Trooper Scott Moreau, of Louisiana State Police, said Martin had been driving at the posted 55 mph speed limit during the crash and slowed down as he approached Lewis.
Martin moved from the right lane to the left lane to avoid Lewis, who evidently turned around and started walking back to the grass median, which placed him the path of the 2003 Chevrolet pickup.
Moreau said the injuries Lewis sustained and the damage to Martin’s truck bumper showed the direction he was walking when he was struck.
Investigators said Martin’s cell phone records show the device was not in use at the time of the crash.