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Man killed crossing I-40 ID’d

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By Bernie Dotson

Sun Correspondent

A pedestrian trying to cross Interstate 40 near mile-marker 20 died Aug. 27 after he was hit by two tractor-trailers, officials said.

Capt. Marinda Spencer of the Gallup Police Department said Jeremiah Begay, 23, of Wide Ruins, Ariz., was hit at about 7:50 pm by a semi that failed to stop. He was then hit by another truck. The driver of the first semi did not stop, but the second driver stopped and exited his vehicle to see what was going on.

“The first semi-truck has not been located,” Spencer said. “There are indications that [Begay] was intoxicated.”

Westbound traffic along the interstate near exit 20 was diverted for a little more than two hours. Spencer said the victim was barely identifiable.

While crossing is not condoned, Spencer said it’s not uncommon for people to cross that stretch of highway to get to Walmart and the retail sector along U.S. 491.

A police investigation of the matter is ongoing.

The last 18-wheeler death along that stretch of I-40 occurred in November of 2014. In that incident, George Morgan, 51, of Mexican Springs was killed while trying to cross the highway.