COMSTOCK TOWNSHIP (WWJ/AP) – Authorities say they’re working to determine how five teenagers killed in a fiery September crash in southwestern Michigan ended up in the car, which was stolen more than a year earlier from Detroit.
The Kalamazoo County sheriff’s department announced Friday it’s closed the traffic-related portion of the investigation, saying an “inexperienced teen driver” who died in the crash lost control of the car in Comstock Township while going 114 mph.
Investigators determined the 2012 Dodge Charger was stolen from Detroit, more than 125 miles away, in May 2016. The department said, however, there’s “no evidence to suggest that any of the teenagers involved in the crash had any knowledge the car was stolen.”
The department is working with Detroit police and others to determine how the car ended up in the Kalamazoo area.
The crash happened around 1 a.m. Saturday, Sept. 2. Police say an officer on patrol saw the car speed past and began to chase it, but soon lost sight of the vehicle. A few moments later, at East Main and Sprinkle Road, the deputy could see an orange glow in the distance. The deputy approached to find the Charger had crashed and was on fire. There was no chase, according to police.
The crash scene was horrific. A large tree was snapped in half and all five people inside the vehicle were killed upon impact.
The victims were 15-year-olds Marshawn Williams and Jaquarius Hegler, 16-year-olds Elexus Hillsman and Cortavian Murphy, and 17-year-old Deztanee Cobb.
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