Report: Driver who caused crash that killed Abilene leader Mark Rogers was traveling at least 127 mph

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ABILENE, Texas (KTAB/KRBC) – A suspect has been arrested for Intoxication Manslaughter in connection to the high-speed crash that killed Abilene leader Mark Rogers.

James A. Wells, Jr. was arrested for Intoxication Manslaughter in connection to the death of Abilene leader Mark Rogers.

James A. Wells, Jr., 50, was taken into custody in Cameron, Texas, Friday afternoon for charges unrelated to the death of 39-year-old Mark Rogers. Wells will be officially charged with Intoxicated Manslaughter once he’s extradited to Taylor County.

Rogers was killed when Wells’ Dodge Challenger slammed into the back of Roger’s pickup truck on Hwy 36 March 13. His wife and three children were also involved but survived, two of the children with serious injuries.

“The effort our Traffic Division has put into this investigation is impressive. I want to thank our Traffic investigators, and more specifically, Traffic Investigator Tyson Kropp for helping secure this arrest,” Abilene Police Chief Marcus Dudley said. “My hope is that the arrest will bring peace of mind to the Rogers family, and our community, that suspected irresponsible behavior has consequences.”

Court documents reveal Wells was traveling at least 127 miles per hour while under the influence of tranquilizers when he slammed into the back of the Rogers’ truck, causing it to veer into a tree.

Investigators got a warrant for data from the Dodge Challenger following the crash, which showed it was traveling in excess of 125 miles per hour, and further analysis confirmed the speed was at least 127 miles per hour, and the speed of impact with the Rogers’ truck was 112 miles per hour.

Witnesses also report seeing Wells driving at a high rate of speed.

Wells was hospitalized following the crash, and when questioned, the documents state he claimed he was only traveling 45 miles per hour and said he was driving in a different direction than the crash.

His blood was drawn and lab results from the Texas Department of Pubic Safety returned a presumptive positive for benzodiazepines.

The Milam County Sheriff’s Office will extradite Wells soon, where he will be booked into the Taylor County Jail on the Intoxication Manslaughter warrant, which comes with a $350,000 bond.

Rogers was a prominent leader in the Abilene community, serving as Market President for Big Brothers Big Sisters Abilene for five years, where his work touched countless lives.

Mark was a graduate of Abilene Christian University. He is survived by his wife and three children. A memorial service is set for May 15 at 10 a.m., at Southern Hills Church of Christ.

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