Attorney: DUI suspect left friend's memorial gathering before hitting and killing teen

By Stacy

JOHNS ISLAND, S.C. (WCIV) - The path of a driver who deputies say caused a crash that killed a 17-year-old girl on Johns Island days before she was set to begin her senior year appears to have started at the home of another James Island man who died in a plane crash.

Kerry Scott was one of the drivers who called 911 Saturday, after he saw the crash that allegedly killed 17-year-old Kylie Gillette.

"I could see his car go vertical in to the air," Scott said. "I have never seen anything like that before, that magnitude of a hit. The way that happened on that turn, [Kylie] never had a clue. She didn't see anything coming, it just happened. It could've been anyone."

James Bryson Munn's attorney said his client was in mourning for his friend, 20-year-old Matthew Gaither. Gaither died in a small plane crash at the Mount Pleasant Airport last Thursday.

Munn had been at a memorial gathering the night before, attorney Jack Sinclaire said.

"I have no doubt the officers on the scene smelled alcohol, either permeating from his body or on his breath," Sinclaire said. "Bryson had been over to the Gaither's house, mourning the loss of probably his best friend. Now for him to be in a tragic accident with the death of this sweet girl... he's just devastated."

Officials charged 20-year-old Munn with felony DUI and underage possession of beer after the Saturday afternoon crash. His attorney said his client was not drinking Saturday morning. But, he said he could not comment on Friday night.

Scott said he and the Johns Island community had been shaken. After he saw the crash, he said he could not drive for the remainder of the weekend.

"We've had heavy hearts even though we don't know this girl. She's definitely touched our lives," Scott said.

Munn's attorney said Kylie's parents were at his hospital room bond hearing Monday at MUSC. They told the judge their daughter had just taken her senior photos before she died.