Local News

Driver charged in teen's death

Posted September 11, 2009 11:57 a.m. EDT
Updated September 12, 2009 7:02 a.m. EDT

— Police charged a driver Friday with felony death by motor vehicle in the death of a 17-year-old who was thrown from the bed of a pickup truck last month.

Benjamin H. Evans, 17, of Raleigh, previously was charged with driving while impaired and careless and reckless driving in the Aug. 28 incident.

Stephen J. Mattress was found lying in the middle of Onyx Lane in the Emerald Point subdivision, police said. He was taken to WakeMed, where he died Sept. 2. Mattress would have celebrated his 18th birthday this weekend.

Friends say Mattress was Evans' best friend.

Two other juveniles, whose names haven't been released, were also in the pickup at the time of the incident, police said.

Meg Minori, a senior at Knightdale, knew Mattress. She said his sudden death of has gotten a lot of students' attention.

“He touched a lot of people’s lives. His funeral had more kids than I would have expected. It was really hard on everybody,” Minori said.

Knightdale Police Chief Shaun Brown hopes the message to be safe clicks with all teens.

“The best thing is to stay away from the alcohol. Stay away from the narcotics. Drive safely and slowly,” Brown said.