CARTHAGE — A man with a history of lying in the road was killed early Wednesday morning when he was hit by a pickup truck driving on Route 142 in Carthage.

Investigators believe Bert Knox, 44, was intoxicated when he was run over about 5 a.m. and killed instantly, just a short distance from his home, according to Department of Public Safety spokesman Steve McCausland.

Kim Micks, 38, of Peru, was driving the 2005 Chevrolet pickup that hit Knox. Micks told police he could not avoid striking what he thought was a dead animal in the narrow, two-lane road, McCausland said.

No charges will be brought against Micks, who was uninjured, he said.

Micks called it a terrible accident that he didn’t want to discuss when reached by phone Wednesday.

“I’m having a really hard time with this,” he said.

Residents, other drivers and town officials have reported seeing Knox lying in the same road several times in the past, according to Maine State Police Lt. Donald Pomelow.

The Town Office is a short distance away on the same stretch of road, he said.

“Over the years, a number of times, he has been located in the roadway,” Pomelow said Wednesday.

Pomelow didn’t know if Knox has ever been charged with anything stemming from lying in the road.

Knox was in a section of road that was a 35 mph speed zone near his home at 560 Carthage Road, which is also Route 142, Pomelow said. Speed is not considered a factor in the crash, he said.

Investigators do not believe Knox was lying in the road intentionally, according to Pomelow. He said a relative and state police troopers who knew Knox said that the dead man had problems with alcohol, and it’s possible that he passed out in the road.

No autopsy is scheduled on the body, and tests are being conducted to determine the blood-alcohol content and other potential factors, which is a common practice in fatal crashes, according to Pomelow and McCausland.

Investigators are looking into another driver who may have seen Knox in the road just before he was killed, according to McCausland. He said he didn’t have any other information Wednesday about that aspect of the investigation.

Sherri MacDonald, who described herself as a close friend of Knox and his family, said he is survived by his wife, a daughter, two sons and three grandchildren.

And he had another grandchild on the way, she said Wednesday.

Family members did not return a request for comment left with MacDonald, who was reached by phone at the home of a cousin of Knox.

“I don’t know what to think about the accident. I don’t believe it, it’s not real to me yet,” she said.

His children are in their early twenties, and he spent a lot of time with family and friends, according to MacDonald, 36, of Dixfield.

“He has been enjoying the time with the grandkids, and I just spoke with him and he was pretty excited about going up to camp to see the kids,” she said.

MacDonald described Knox as a good guy who was generous and cheerful.

“He will be missed,” she said.

David Robinson — 861-9287

[email protected]