Police identify Augusta man killed in Liberty car accident

Posted July 31, 2013, at 4:18 p.m.

LIBERTY, Maine — Police have identified the man killed Tuesday morning in a two-car accident on Route 3 as 69-year-old Gary Diffin of Augusta.

Driver fatigue appears to be the primary cause of the accident, which killed Diffin and caused the other driver to be taken to the hospital with injuries not considered life-threatening, according to Chief Deputy Jeff Trafton of the Waldo County Sheriff’s Office.

Ethan Hopkins, 23, of Orland was driving a white GMC van at 8:17 a.m. when he drifted across the centerline into the oncoming lane and into the path of Diffin’s 2004 Saturn sedan.

“[Hopkins] admitted to officers on scene that he thought he dozed off. He was tired,” Trafton said.

Police waited to release the name of the man who died until they notified his next of kin.

Trafton said that in accordance with state law, both drivers would be tested to see whether there were alcohol or drugs in their systems at the time of the accident.

“There’s no indication at the scene that either one was under any kind of influence,” he said.

The accident happened in the vicinity of the Liberty General Store, where the speed limit is set at 55 mph.

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