Motorcyclist Killed - Driver Arrested

5-7-06 – OHP Troopers say a pick-up driver was assaulting a female passenger when he swerved into the opposite lane and struck a motorcycle head-on. 52-year-old Ronnie Vanderburg of Ardmore died at the scene.

It happened on Highway 177, four miles north of Dickson Sunday evening at 5:30. The impact threw Vanderburg 65 feet.

After an investigation, troopers found that the driver of the pickup, 19-year-old Tony Alan Bigger of Madill, was involved in a domestic dispute with a female passenger in the vehicle. According to OHP, the driver was attacking the woman when the truck veered left of the center lane, causing the crash.

Another witness was also in the pickup. 42-year-old Carlos Ramos was treated and released. Bigger was as well, and now faces manslaughter charges. The female passenger was also taken to the hospital for surgery. The OHP public information officer says it is unclear if her injuries were caused by the attack, the crash, or both. Troopers at the scene say the woman was violently attacked. They found large clumps of hair, pulled from her head, in the pickup.

Highway 177 was shut down for about three hours, but troopers cleared the scene Sunday night.