Prosecutors: Man was drunk, speeding Monday afternoon when he caused deadly crash that killed husband, father

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Joseph Surratt’s mug shot from the Clay County Sheriff’s Department

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The Clay County Prosecutor’s Office charged a 20-year-old man with involuntary manslaughter in the death of  a husband and father, whom they say he crashed into head-on Monday afternoon while speeding and drunk.

According to the probable cause statement, Joseph C. Surratt, 20, of Lee’s Summit, told a detective he doesn’t know why he was driving his 1994 Pontiac Sunbird so fast when he lost control at 102nd and Woodland at about 2:15 p.m. Monday in the Northland.

Witnesses say Surratt was going about 60-85 m.p.h. in a 40 m.p.h. zone when he crossed the center line and crashed into the victim, George Sykora. Sykora, according to police, saw the car coming toward him and tried to pull off to the side of the road to avoid him, but the road has no shoulder.

Sykora was taken to the hospital, but died from his injuries.

According to police, Surratt told the detective that he drank three beers the morning of the crash, but in spite of a blood alcohol content of .255, he claimed he was not drunk at the time.

A computer check revealed Surratt’s driver’s license was already suspended.

Bond is set at $50,000.

Sykora leaves a wife and two children.

George A. Sykora and his wife have been married since August 1992. He was killed in a head-on car crash Monday, April 21. The other driver is charged with involuntary manslaughter.
George A. Sykora and his wife have been married since August 1992. He was killed in a head-on car crash Monday, April 21. The other driver is charged with involuntary manslaughter.

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