SIU identifies teen victims of Thursday's fatal crash in Hamilton
The province’s Special Investigations Unit has identified the victims of Thursday’s fatal crash in Hamilton.
The police watchdog said the deceased are Nathan Wehrle, 15, of Cambridge and Taryn Hewitt, 16, of London. The SIU believes the pair knew each other and that the names were released with permission from the families.
The circumstances that led to the crash that killed them remain unclear.
They were driving down Hwy. 6 in rural Hamilton with Waterloo police in pursuit when the vehicle they were in collided head-on with a transport truck just before 10 a.m. Thursday.
The car driven by Wehrle and Hewitt was stolen, according to Monica Hudon, communications coordinator of the SIU.
Waterloo Regional Police said they were involved in the pursuit because they had received a report of a potential abduction and assault of a woman in Cambridge around 9:30 a.m. that day.
Police found the vehicle attempted to stop it but the driver allegedly refused and “a pursuit was initiated,” said Insp. Mike Haffner. The driver fled east on Hwy. 401 and then south on Hwy. 6.
The driver of the transport truck and Waterloo police at the scene of the crash were uninjured, but the male driver and female passenger died instantly.
“This is an absolutely devastating collision — massive amounts of damage, trauma and debris all across the highway,” OPP Sgt. Kerry Schmidt said earlier in the week.
Police have not said whether the reports that a woman was abducted were substantiated.
The SIU was called in to investigate, as it is whenever there are reports involving police where there has been death or serious injury.
The Ontario Provincial Police is investigating the crash and the SIU is investigating the Waterloo police’s involvement.
Anyone with information should contact the Special Investigations Unit at 1-800-787-8529 or 416-622-0748.
With files from Nicole O’Reilly and The Canadian Press