WARREN, Ohio (AP) — The owner of an SUV that flipped into a pond with a load of teens in Ohio says the vehicle had been stolen.
Six teens died in the crash Sunday morning in the Ohio city of Warren, while two others managed to escape from the wreckage.
The State Highway Patrol says the sport utility vehicle’s owner met with police Monday and filed a theft report, saying it was stolen in the city.
State police earlier had said that no one in the group had permission to take the vehicle.
Investigators also now say that none of the teens were wearing seat belts.
The dead were 14 to 19 years old. Authorities said the SUV was speeding when it hit a guardrail.
The speeding sport utility vehicle taken without permission and carrying eight teenagers crashed into a guardrail Sunday morning and flipped over into a swampy pond in northeast Ohio, killing five boys and the young woman driving, the state highway patrol said.
The Honda Passport veered off the left side of a road and overturned just south of the city of Warren, about 60 miles east of Cleveland, Lt. Anne Ralston said. Investigators say it came to rest upside down in the swamp and sank with five of the victims trapped inside. A sixth, who was thrown from the SUV during the crash, was found under it when the vehicle was taken out of the water.
The two boys who survived escaped from the submerged vehicle and ran a quarter-mile to a home to call 911, the highway patrol said.
State Highway Patrol Lt. Brian Holt said at an evening news conference that speed was a factor, although investigators were still trying to determine the speed at the time of the accident.
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