Victims in Eastover crash identified, family believes brakes fai - wistv.com - Columbia, South Carolina |

Victims in Eastover crash identified, family believes brakes failed

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Accident scene Accident scene
Accident scene Accident scene
Family members gather at the scene Friday morning Family members gather at the scene Friday morning
Accident scene Accident scene

EASTOVER, SC (WIS) - Three people, including a teenage expectant mother, died in an early morning, single-vehicle crash in eastern Richland County.

Richland County Coroner Gary Watts said the victims who died in the accident have been identified as 16-year-old Amara Drennon of Eastover, 20-year-old Justin Groves of Eastover and 20-year-old Kathleen Grady of Columbia. All three were passengers.

According to Watts, Drennon was pregnant, but doctors were unable to save the baby. Watts did not know how far along in the pregnancy Drennon was.

Another passenger, Christopher Newman, and the driver, 18-year-old Trevor Groves, were transported to a Columbia hospital with non-life threatening injuries.

The accident happened around midnight at the intersection of Harmon Road and Leesburg Road. According to Highway Patrol, Groves was traveling north on Harmon Road and as he attempted to turn left at Leesburg Road, he lost control of the vehicle and struck a tree.

Family members gathered at the accident scene Friday morning trying to make sense of the tragic accident. The Groves' uncle, John Seiple, said he believes the brakes on his nephew's Chevy Blazer failed.

"[Groves] pumped the brakes four times," said Seiple. "He tried the emergency brakes, still wouldn't stop. The steering wheel locked up. He was finally able to free his steering wheel, but he still couldn't control the car."

Seiple said there were no skid marks at the scene. "My prayers go out to the families," said Seiple.

The accident is still under investigation.

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