Police say one high school student was killed and another suffered personal injuries on the morning of June 4 after their sport utility vehicle crashed into a Wal-Mart store in Dunn.
Police said that 16-year-old Ashley Moore died in the accident and the driver, 18-year-old Dillon Tart, received air transport to WakeMed where he was listed in stable condition later that afternoon. Both were identified as students of Triton High School in Erwin.
Witnesses said that they saw the two arguing in the SUV as the exited the Murphy Gas station in the parking lot at the Wal-Mart. The SUV then accelerated and clipped two other vehicles in the parking lot before overturning several times and colliding with the front of the store.
Ron Robinson, who was inside the store when the crash occurred, said he heard glass breaking and a sound “like a bomb had gone off.” He said he immediately ran outside to help the teens trapped inside the vehicle.
Robinson said they tried to keep Tart’s neck stabilized, but were unable to get to Moore until the roof was cut off the vehicle.
Murphy Gas station manager Sammi Locklear said she could hear Moore screaming as the vehicle sped across the parking lot.
Police say the other two vehicles were empty at the time.
The front of the store sustained some damage, but the store remained open.
Police say the case is being investigated as a domestic situation or a medical condition as the cause of the accident.
Investigators with the North Carolina Highway Patrol were attempting to reconstruct the crash in order to determine the SUV’s speed and if the vehicle had any mechanical defect. They planned to use security camera footage to aid with their reconstruction.