Suspect Now Charged With 2nd Degree Murder In Deadly Drunk Driving Wreck

Trooper Sean Spring tells WITN a Jacksonville woman was killed by a drunk driver after a three vehicle wreck on Highway 17 on Saint Patrick’s Day.

The accident happened on Highway 17 less than a mile south of White Oak River Road around 9:15 p.m.

Trooper Spring says 40-year-old Ronald Mehrley of Jacksonville was driving a 2002 GMC pickup truck north on Highway 17 when he crossed the center line and hit a Cadillac head on.

54-year-old Charles Berry was driving the Cadillac at the time, his wife 53-year-old Cheryl Berry was in the passenger seat. Trooper Spring says Cheryl was killed. Charles was transported to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

Mehrley’s car then spun around and hit a 2005 Chevy Equinox driven by Shaneria Phillips. Phillips was not injured.

Trooper Spring says alcohol was involved. Mehrley has been charged with 2nd degree murder, DWI, careless and reckless driving, aggravating felony death, left to center, and restriction violation. He was placed in jail.

WITN has requested bond information for Mehrley. We were told by the Onslow County Sheriff's Office that information could not be released at this time.

Mehrley is expected in court Monday morning.

Part of Highway 17 was shut down for a couple of hours while troopers investigated the scene. It is now reopen.

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According to Onslow County dispatchers part of Highway 17 is shut down right now due to an accident.

Dispatchers say the accident is at the intersection of Highway 17 and Belgrade Extension heading into Maysville, which is in Jones County.

Troopers are on the scene right now. They tell us two people are seriously injured.

We will share more information with you as soon as it becomes available.


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