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UPDATE: Jacksonville Restaurant Reopens Day After Vehicle Crashes Into It

By: April Davis
By: April Davis
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Baker's Restaurant on Richlands Highway in Jacksonville is back in business.

Wade Wainwright, a friend of the restaurant owners, says Baker's reopened at 6:00 a.m. Saturday after passing a health inspection. Saturday evening the restaurant was full of customers enjoying Baker's food again after it had to close it's doors Friday when a Toyota Corolla with 2 men inside crashed into the building about 2:45 am.

Both men are said by investigators to have fled on foot and were caught about an hour later by Onslow County deputies in the woods nearby. Both men are charged with DWI because neither would say who was driving.

There's a temporary wall up at Baker's while repairs are made. Wainwright says the owners hope to reopen the entire restaurant next week.

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Previous Story:

Investigators said a driver crashed into a local eatery early Friday morning before the business could open for breakfast. Now two men are in custody.

The Highway Patrol and Onslow County deputies are investigating the crash of a Toyota Corolla into Baker's Restaurant along Richlands Highway, across from Onslow Memorial Park.

Officials said it appeared someone went off the road just before 3 a.m. Friday, went airborne, then crashed into the building.

Troopers said once they got on scene, the occupants inside the car were nowhere to be found.

By 4 a.m. the pair was in custody.

Onslow County deputies said they caught up with 30-year-old Carlos Mareno of Charlotte and 27-year-old Charles Morgan of Winston-Salem in the woods, about half a mile away from the crash site.

Investigators tell WITN both men work for Humphrey Mechanical and are contracted by Camp Lejeune.

Officers said while both men were drunk, neither would admit to driving the car, so both are now facing charges of driving while impaired, careless and reckless driving, and damage to property.

In the meantime, the popular restaurant will be closed for a couple of days so repairs can be made.

"I'm so thankful that nobody was here because if it had been at night time on a Friday night tonight when this place is packed somebody would have been hurt bad," said co-owner Dannie Raynor. "I'm just so glad those guys were in this accident weren't hurt either."


PREVIOUS STORY:

Investigators said a driver crashed into a local eatery early Friday morning before the business could open for breakfast.

WITN has confirmed the Highway Patrol is assisting to investigate the crash into Baker's Restaurant along Richlands Highway, across from Onslow Memorial Park.

Officials said it appeared someone went off the road, crashed into the building, then took off.

No word yet if officers and troopers have been able to find the driver or if that driver was hurt.

WITN's April Davis is heading to the scene.

You'll find the latest information here and on WITN News at Sunrise.


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