Police: Wrong-way driver arrested after drunken I-575 head-on crash



KENNESAW, Ga. - An 18-year-old woman is facing several charges after a wrong-way crash on the interstate that seriously injured two people.

Cobb County police say Alexandria Cymone Brooks was driving drunk early Saturday morning when she hit another car head-on. An arrest warrant for Brooks says she was driving southbound in the northbound lanes of I-575 near Barrett Parkway when the crash happened around 2:30 a.m. Saturday.

Police say Brooks told them she’d had alcohol at a party before getting in the car.

"The accused did smell of an alcoholic beverage and admitted to consuming alcohol prior to the collision," the warrant states.

The driver and passenger inside the other car suffered serious injuries. Lauren Farmer, 26, was rushed to Wellstar Kennestone Hospital for emergency surgery. The other woman in the car, Becky Hood, was also taken to the hospital with non-life threatening injuries. Hood was released the next day, but Farmer remains in the hospital, undergoing several surgeries.

Farmer’s Ford Focus was crushed in the accident.

“I cried. I can’t believe my niece survived,” said Farmer’s aunt Cyndi Johnson after seeing the car. “Right now I’m just in shock that this has happened. I’m angry.”

Farmer had to be cut from the car. She is currently in a medically-induced coma in ICU at the hospital. She suffered two crushed feet, two broken femurs and extensive internal problems.

Hood has a black eye, stitches on her eyelid and a cast on one foot.

Yesterday, Johnson says, Farmer squeezed her father’s hand for the first time since the crash and slightly opened her eyes.

“A little bit of relief from my brother-in-law that he was finally able to communicate with her,” Johnson said.

Johnson told Channel 2’s Erica Byfield it will take her niece a year or two to fully recover.

“How horrific it is to see somebody laying there, 26-year-old just clinging. She’s a strong girl. She’s a fighter,” said Johnson. “This is just tragic and people need to know, think before you do things.”

Farmer’s family has set up a “Give Forward” donation page to help cover her mounting medical bills. She’s had three surgeries and needs at least three more. Johnson says she’s an only child and her parents refuse to leave her side.

“They have put their lives on hold and their total focus now is getting her better,” said Johnson. “Her life is put on hold because of a senseless, senseless act. We encourage people to pray.”

Police say Brooks was also transported to the hospital after the crash. Police arrested Brooks Saturday after she was released from the hospital. She is charged with two counts of serious injury by vehicle, DUI, underage possession and reckless driving.

Brooks was granted $30,000 bond, but as of Thursday, she remained in jail.

Lauren's sorority sisters plan to hold a fundraiser for Lauren at Johnny's Pizza in Woodstock from 11 a.m. until closing time on Aug. 7. Twenty percent of the proceeds will go toward Lauren's medical bills and making her home handicap-accessible.

Channel 2 Action News

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