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Film crew members charged for fatal accident

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POSTED: July 16, 2014 11:26 a.m.
Photo provided by Wayne County Sheriff's Office/

The film crew was on the CSX trestle over the Altamaha River when a train came.

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One director and one producer of the Greg Allman biopic “Midnight Rider” turned themselves into the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office for booking on Sunday, according to Sheriff John Carter.
Director Randall Miller and his wife, producer Jody Savin, each posted a $27,000 bond, which was paid in cash, Carter said. They returned to California, but they’ll have to return to Georgia at a later date to face an arraignment in superior court.
Producer Jay Sedrish, who is working with his lawyer and the district attorney, is expected to turn himself in this week. The three were charged earlier this month with involuntary manslaughter and criminal trespass in the February death of camera assistant Sarah Elizabeth Jones, 27, of Atlanta.
Carter said Jones’ parents were made aware of the bond-hearing procedures Sunday.
According to previous Courier reports and stories on the incident, a 20-member film crew from Savannah was filming on a narrow train trestle Feb. 20 near Jesup when a northbound freight train — apparently unexpected — struck a prop mattress they put on the track for a dream-sequence scene. In the scramble to get out of the way, Jones was killed by flying debris. At least eight other crew members were injured. Miller was pulled from the tracks by another crew member at the last minute.
According to an incident report released shortly after Jones’ death by the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office, railway owner CSX has emails in which it denies the production company access to its tracks.
The exchange was between location manager Charlie Baxter and Carla Groleau of the rail company.
Sedrish, interviewed by a detective, was asked point-blank if the company had permission to shoot on the tracks and trestle.
“That’s complicated,” he replied.
Wayne County Detective Joe Gardner told reporters a few hours after the accident that Miller’s Unclaimed Freight Productions had permission from the Rayonier paper-products company to shoot on its land.

 

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