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Bride killed and groom injured when driver slams into golf cart after wedding

Aric Hutchinson and Samantha Miller are pictured at their wedding on Friday in a photo on a GoFundMe page. They were traveling in a golf cart hours later when a driver struck, killing Miller and injuring Hutchinson and two others.
Screenshot by NPR
Aric Hutchinson and Samantha Miller are pictured at their wedding on Friday in a photo on a GoFundMe page. They were traveling in a golf cart hours later when a driver struck, killing Miller and injuring Hutchinson and two others.

A newlywed bride is dead and a groom is in serious condition after a woman who is accused of driving under the influence and more than double the speed limit slammed into the back of a golf cart on a South Carolina beach road, authorities said.

Samantha Miller, 34, of Charlotte, N.C., was riding in a golf cart-style vehicle back to her rental house with her husband just hours after their wedding Friday evening when she was struck and killed, said Andrew Gilreath, director of public safety for the City of Folly Beach, S.C., in a news release.

Three additional passengers traveling in the golf cart, including the groom, were taken to a local hospital for treatment of their injuries. The groom, Aric Hutchinson, remains in a local hospital in critical condition.

His mother, Annette Hutchinson, said in a GoFundMe page set up to raise money to help cover medical and funeral expenses that her son has had one of two reconstruction surgeries, numerous broken bones and a brain injury. She said Aric will have a "long recovery."

"I was handed Aric's wedding ring in a plastic bag at the hospital, five hours after Sam placed it on his finger and they read each other their vows. Aric has lost the love of his life," Annette wrote on a fundraising page.

The golf cart, which had proper lights, was in legal condition to drive at night, The Associated Press reported.

The driver of the striking vehicle, 25-year-old Jamie Komoroski, only briefly hit the brakes in the vehicle before crashing into the golf cart, police said.

Authorities said an investigation into the crash later revealed Komoroski had been driving at 65 mph in a 25 mph zone at the time she struck the four passengers. Komoroski was arrested and charged with one count of reckless homicide and three counts of felony DUI resulting in great bodily harm, police said.

It is not immediately clear if Komoroski obtained an attorney to represent her.

The City of Folly Beach Department of Public Safety said it would not be releasing any additional information, including body camera footage and audio recordings, as the investigation is still ongoing.

Copyright 2023 NPR. To see more, visit https://www.npr.org.

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Jonathan Franklin is a digital reporter on the News desk covering general assignment and breaking national news.