Pedestrian Killed At I-540 Overpass Identified

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The pedestrian killed on Interstate 540 last week in Fayetteville has been identified by state police following a five-day investigation.

Brandon Keith S. Mullins, of Fayetteville, was found dead last Wednesday (July 17) following a call of a pedestrian versus vehicle accident on the interstate at the Wedington Drive overpass. Mullins’ body was struck several times by northbound traffic before officers arrived on scene, according to an Arkansas State Police report released Monday.

“It is unknown at this time if the deceased jumped from the overpass or was crossing the interstate on foot,” the report states. “The cause of death is unknown at this time.”

Police had been trying to identify the body following Mullins’ death, using DNA samples from family members, according to Arkansas State Police.

Troopers found the man’s body in the northbound lanes of the interstate near the Wedington Avenue overpass at 1:49 a.m.

No charges are expected to be filed against the motorists who ran over the victim. The incident was investigated as an accident by Arkansas State Police, Highway Patrol and Criminal Investigation Division.

Police released several 911 tapes Thursday concerning the accident.

Caller: “Hello. Yeah, I believe we just ran over a person by accident.”
911: “Okay, where are you?”
Caller: “We were crossing the Wedington exit, and we crossed just under the bridge.  And we hit something by accident, and we swear it was a person.”

The interstate near the Wedington Exit was closed for several hours after the body was discovered. Traffic was backed up for several miles during morning rush hour.

Those who frequent the businesses nearby on Wedington Drive said they sometimes see people walking on the road near the interstate, but don't often see pedestrians close to the heavy traffic.

"Not under the bridge. I see people walk over it, but never under," said Betty Stufflebean. "It's just a terrible tragedy."

"I've never seen anyone on 540 itself, ocassionally I see somebody on the exit a hitchhiker, trying to get picked up, but I've never seen anyone walk on the interstate," said Joe Jerrell. "It's not something you'd expect driving down 540 just suddenly someone falls off a bridge. I don't even know how I'd react to that."