Gwinnett Man ID'ed as Sugar Hill Crash Victim

The driver of the car in the fiery crash was an Ellijay man, Gwinnett Police report.

Gwinnett Police tentatively have identified the two fatalities from the fiery, one-car crash that occurred Tuesday in unincorporated Sugar Hill.

According to a news release Wednesday, July 4, James P. Gifford, 30, of Ellijay was the driver and Thomas Hawkins, 21, of Snellville was the passenger in the BMW that crashed into a tree and burst into flames. The accident occurred on Sycamore Road near Nelson Brodgon Boulevard.

The police news release Wednesday said that investigators still are waiting on confirmation through dental records.

According to police, the driver of the dark gray BMW 740i was heading north on Sycamore Road when the driver lost control. The vehicle crossed over the double yellow line traveling off the west side of the road and struck a tree in the 5300 block of Sycamore Road.

After impact, the vehicle became engulfed in fire. The vehicle was occupied by the driver and a passenger, and both were deceased when the fire was extinguished, police said.

It is believed that the couple were traveling to Lake Lanier after leaving an Alcoholic Anonymous class.

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