KNIGHTDALE, N.C. (WNCN) – Dedric Romero Privette has officially been indicted for second-degree murder in the death of Knightdale Police Officer Ryan Hayworth from Oct. 17, 2021 by a Wake County grand jury.
Privette, who had a blood alcohol content (BAC) level of .18, or twice the legal limit, slammed into the back of Hayworth and his training officer, Cody Hagler, on Interstate 540 at approximately 80 miles per hour.
Hayworth and Hagler were responding to a single-vehicle accident in the eastbound lanes near mile marker 22 when Privette failed to reduce his speed and struck them, officials previously said.
Hayworth died at the scene and Hagler has still not recovered one year later.
“Nothing will bring our brother back to us, but this indictment is a huge step toward justice,” Knightdale Police Chief Lawrence Capps said. “Today marks the one-year anniversary of Ryan’s death, so this is timely and welcomed news.”
He continued, “The Knightdale Police Department would like to express our sincere appreciation to N.C. State Highway Patrol, the District Attorney’s Office, and the members of grand jury for their commitment to justice in this case.”
Privette is currently awaiting trial for this indictment, as well as charges of felony serious injury, DWI, careless and reckless driving and failing to move over for an emergency vehicle.
Hayworth, 23, was a three-month veteran of the Knightdale force and a member of the United States Army.
Hayworth was sworn into Knightdale Police Department on July 21. He was a long-time resident of the area and graduated from East Wake Academy.
“We are pleased to see the upgraded charges. While nothing can bring Ryan back to us, we hope that this is the beginning of finding a level of justice that honors his sacrifice,” Hayworth’s family said in a statement after being notified of Privette’s charges.