X

Teenage passenger dead after stolen SUV crashes into Smyrna home

Jose Avalon of Big Bear Restoration removes debris Monday morning from the scene of a fatal crash into a home at the corner of Bell Drive and Afton Way in Smyrna.
Jose Avalon of Big Bear Restoration removes debris Monday morning from the scene of a fatal crash into a home at the corner of Bell Drive and Afton Way in Smyrna.

The driver of a stolen Lexus SUV is at large after leaving the scene of a Sunday morning crash that killed one passenger and injured two others, police said.

Smyrna officers saw the vehicle being driven off the Nalley Lexus lot on Cobb Parkway, according to the police department. They were responding to an alarm call at the dealership about 4:40 a.m.

“While investigating the audible alarm, officers discovered a door to the business that had been forced open,” Smyrna police spokesman Sgt. Louis Defense said in a news release. “Upon making this discovery, multiple suspects fled from inside of the closed business.”

Another officer saw the SUV leave the lot at the same time and head down Spring Road, Defense said. The vehicle was traveling “at a high rate of speed,” he said.

The officer lost sight of the vehicle on Spring Road but caught up with it on Bell Drive.

“The stolen Lexus SUV continued down Bell Drive at a high rate of speed, where the driver of the vehicle lost control and crashed into a home on the corner of Bell Drive and Afton Way,” Defense said.

Despite the damage to the SUV, Defense said the driver was able to crawl out from the wreckage and escape. A 16-year-old female passenger and two male passengers were left behind.

The girl was dead at the scene. The other two passengers were treated by responding medics and taken to Wellstar Kennestone Hospital, according to police.

Their conditions were not provided. The names of the passengers were not released “at the family’s request for privacy,” Defense said.

“Keeping with the core values of the Smyrna Police Department's commitment to transparency, Chief Joseph Bennett requested the Georgia State Patrol to come and investigate the accident portion of this tragic accident and senseless death,” he said.

The police department is continuing its investigation into the burglary and theft stemming from the incident at the dealership, as well as the criminal damage to property and death resulting from the crash.

— Please return to AJC.com for updates.

In other news: