State patrol says charges still possible in fatal car accident
A Colorado State Patrol investigator said charges ranging from vehicular homicide to careless driving that resulted in death could be applicable in the case of the rollover crash that killed 17-year-old Alex Terral on June 24.Capt. Barry Bratt said he was aware of a rumor that a rollover crash that killed 17-year-old Alex Terral was caused by the driver racing another car.”I’ve heard the rumor, but I don’t know how much validity there is to it,” said state patrol Capt. Barry Bratt, who is investigating the June 24 car accident.Terral died from injuries suffered in the accident that occurred on Highway 82 a mile east of Aspen. Friend and fellow Aspen High School student Dustin Hite, 17, was driving a 1991 Mercedes when the car spun off the right side of the road, collided with a fence and then a large boulder before rolling twice and ejecting Terral, who was not wearing a seat belt. Hite and another passenger, Max Bardell, were not seriously injured.Yesterday Colorado State Patrol Sgt. Rich Duran said the investigation has revealed that Hite was exceeding the speed limit, but that final conclusions will not be reached until later this week.The stretch of highway where the crash occurred is relatively benign, many miles below the narrow roads and sharp corners of Highway 82’s ascent to Independence Pass. The spot of the accident prompted many to speculate that Hite was driving recklessly when the crash occurred.Hite’s father said yesterday that Dustin has not been contacted by authorities regarding the crash.State patrol officials say they hope to complete the investigation by the end of this week.Eben Harrell’s e-mail address is firstname.lastname@example.org
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