Grieving dad arrested for adding guardrail at site of daughter’s death

CLEVELAND, Ga. — A man whose 16-year-old daughter was killed when a car overturned in a White County creek has been arrested for making improvements at the site.

CBS affiliate WGCL reports that Shannon Hamilton planned to add a guardrail near a bridge where his daughter died in March. Hamilton says he hopes they would be a temporary fix until guardrails could be installed.

“When you’re a grieving parent, when you’ve lost your child, you do what you’ve got to do,” Hamilton told WGCL. “Almost 30 days went by, so I took things into my own hands.”

Hamilton’s daughter, Cecily Mcree Hamilton, died in a March 15 crash along with driver 18-year-old Taylor Scott Swing. Police have said the car left the road, went off a bank and overturned in Town Creek.

Hamilton told the station that he started to put in the guardrail last weekend when police stopped him.

“They were very respectable,” Hamilton said. “He said, ‘you’re going to do this anyway aren’t you?’ I said ‘yes.'”

Hamilton was arrested Sunday afternoon for interfering with government property and posted $5,000 bail. He says county officials should make the area safer.

County officials told WGCL they want to see safety changes as well and expect new rails to be put up within two weeks.

“I don’t condone illegal activity, but I’m on a mission to impact lives and to do positive things,” Hamilton said.

“He had to do his job, and as a father, I had to do mine,” he said of police. “All I wanted to do was save lives.”

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