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76-Year-Old Driver Crashes into Medina Business

By Deneisha Pearson
By dpearson@wbbjtv.com

MEDINA, Tenn -- A car crashes into a West Tennessee business after police suspect the elderly driver fell asleep at the wheel, causing a multi-vehicle collision, and it was all caught on camera.

Business owner Anita Cooper says she was sitting right next to the window when the accident happened.

“I heard a loud boom,” Cooper said. “All the pictures came flying off the wall and I looked out and all I saw was a red truck outside the office window.”

Surveillance video shows 76-year-old Althon Smith was driving down Old Jackson Highway around 11:30 Tuesday morning

Medina police say he ran off the road into a fence and plowed into two other vehicles, pinning one of them against the brick wall.

“He was just sitting there completely unaware that he had had a wreck,” Cooper said.

Officials say the driver has a medical condition, and say he possibly fell asleep at the wheel.

The store owner says if it wasn't for one of the cars being in the way, the driver would've went through the window and hit her instead.

Medina police say this isn't the first time Smith has had a wreck like this.

“When the policemen arrived they immediately said, oh that's the gentleman that crashed into McDonald's a couple of months ago,” Cooper said.

Cooper says she's thankful no one was hurt.

“I know it's hard but sometimes you got to tell them it's time to take the keys away,” Cooper said.

Police say Smith didn't remember anything from the crash and wasn't cited for the accidents.

They say he was taken by ambulance to a Jackson hospital with no injuries.