Okolona man dead after truck overturns in Prairie creek


An Okolona man is dead after police say his truck ran off a bridge and into a creek in rural Clay County on Sunday.

The body of 59-year-old Rodney Griggs, of County Road 173 in Okolona, was found on Monday in his Dodge pickup truck, which was overturned in Johnson Bell Creek under the bridge on Smith Road in Prairie, according to Clay County Coroner Alvin Carter. Smith Road is located adjacent to Lake Grove Road.

Carter said the wreck likely resulted from Griggs losing control of the vehicle as he traveled east on Smith Road. However, the cause of death is believed to be drowning.

Emergency and law enforcement officials think the incident happened in the afternoon hours on Sunday.

Clay County Sheriff Eddie Scott said weather could have been a possible factor in the wreck, as the area saw heavy rain during the time they believe Griggs ran off the road.

"It’s hard to say right now, they are going to do a toxicology test on him," Scott said. "The last time (witnesses) saw him, weather could have played a factor when it was raining hard between 11 a.m. and 12 p.m."

He then said Griggs would frequent hunting property on Smith Road owned by a family friend, but it is still unclear as of Tuesday why Griggs was on the road.

Scott said investigators believe Griggs was alone in the truck at the time, but they are still working to gather details. He had not been reported missing, either, the sheriff said.

The incident remains under active investigation.