Crime & Courts

His daughter died in a DUI crash — and he gave the teen driver the alcohol, SC cops say

Nicholas Jimmy Adams
Nicholas Jimmy Adams Greenville County Detention Center

Two months after his daughter was killed in a DUI-related crash, a South Carolina man has been arrested on multiple charges, including providing alcohol to the teenage driver, WHNS reported.

Nicholas Jimmy Adams was taken to the Greenville County Detention Center on Dec. 13, jail records show.

According to arrest warrants, he did “willfully and knowingly, purchase, disburse and provide alcoholic beverages” to Madison Michelle Bagwell, the 19-year-old that was driving when his daughter, 17-year-old Jessica Adams, was killed in an Oct. 13 wreck, WYFF reported.

In addition to other crimes, Bagwell has been charged with three counts of DUI and remains behind bars at the Greenville County Detention Center, according to jail records.

Madison Michelle Bagwell Greenville County Detention Center

Two 13-year-old passengers and a 20-year-old passenger were also injured in the deadly crash, The State previously reported. One of the 13-year-olds was identified as Jessica Adams’ younger sister, per WSPA.

There has been no word on their condition.

Shortly after the October collision, Adams said he forgave Bagwell for her role in the crash that killed his daughter, McClatchy reported.

“People make bad decisions, accidents happen. I don’t hate her for it, I still love her,” Adams said, according to WHNS, adding he considered Bagwell “just another stepdaughter.”

Also in October, Adams said he didn’t know where Bagwell “obtained alcohol” the night of the fatal wreck, per WYFF.

But an investigation by South Carolina Law Enforcement Division agents found that Adams supplied Bagwell with the alcohol and allowed her to drive, WHNS reported.

The 39-year-old has been charged with three counts of contributing to the delinquency of a minor; two counts of giving beer or wine to minor, transfer or gift; parties to a crime — DUI/felon driving under the influence resulting in death; parties to a crime — DUI/felony driving under the influence, great bodily injury results; and unlawful neglect of child or helpless person, jail records show.

Adams remains incarcerated at Greenville County Detention Center, according to jail records, which say his bond was “not satisfied,” on two of the charges, and was not set on the others.

Bagwell is also still being held at the detention center, records show.

According to jail records, Bagwell is charged with felony DUI resulting in death; two counts of felony DUI resulting in great bodily injury; child endangerment; simple possession of marijuana; alcohol possession by a minor; and open container.

Bagwell was denied bond because she had been “previously charged for DUI in Pickens County in November 2017,” WHNS reported.

Nicholas Adams was the passenger in the vehicle with Bagwell during that 2017 incident, and was described by a S.C. Highway Patrol incident report as “extremely intoxicated,” according to WYFF.

According to the S.C. Highway Patrol, the deadly crash in October occurred when a Jeep Cherokee driven by Bagwell overturned on U.S. 25 near Travelers Rest, north of Greenville, The State reported.

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Noah Feit is a Real Time reporter with The State and McClatchy Carolinas Regional Team. The award-winning journalist has worked for multiple newspapers since starting his career in 1999.