Local News

Charges not ruled out in fatal Walmart crash

Posted June 7, 2010 5:00 p.m. EDT
Updated June 7, 2010 6:49 p.m. EDT

— Dunn police said Monday they still haven't ruled out criminal charges in a fatal crash in which an SUV slammed into a local Walmart Friday.

Capt. Jimmy Pope said investigators and the Harnett County District Attorney's Office are awaiting medical records, a state Highway Patrol wreck report and enhanced store surveillance video to determine how to proceed in the case.

"The charges – if we found out there was a criminal act – they could be rather substantial," Pope said.

Ashley Moore, 16, a junior at Triton High School in Dunn, died as a result of the crash. The SUV's driver, Dillon Tart, 18, was treated for injuries at a local hospital and was released on Sunday.

Witnesses reported seeing the teens arguing inside the SUV at a gas station several hundred yards away and then seeing the SUV accelerate, clip two vehicles and then flip several times, hitting the front of the store.

A Harnett County EMS crew eating at a nearby Waffle House saw the crash and first called 911, according to calls released Monday. Several other witnesses also called 911 to report the crash.

Pope said surveillance video confirmed witness accounts that the SUV was traveling at a high rate of speed. Investigators haven't determined how fast it was going.

Meanwhile Monday, Moore was buried. Grief counselors were also available at Triton, where Tart is a senior.

Flowers, balloons and notes also covered the barricades in front of the Walmart wall.

"We miss you. We love you," one of the notes read. "Sorry you had to go so soon."