Other than the now infamous clip that quickly spread around the world showing NASCAR’s Tony Stewart fatally hitting fellow driver Kevin Ward Jr., investigators are reviewing another video of the accident taken from a different angle, The Sporting News is reporting. However, that video has not been made public, and the Ontario County (N.Y.) Sheriff’s Dept. has thus far said there is no evidence that Stewart intentionally ran down Ward Saturday at Canandaigua Motorsports Park during the sprint car race.
“At this time, there are no facts that exist that support any criminal behavior or conduct or any probable cause of a criminal act in this investigation,” Sherriff Philip Povero said on Monday. “This is an open investigation. What I just said is not indicative that the investigation is over or conclusions have been made.”
During the horrific incident that swept across the world of racing over the weekend, Stewart put Ward’s sprint car into the wall. With the caution flag raised, Ward, 20, then hopped out of his wrecked vehicle and walked to the middle of the track while a couple of cars buzzed by him. He was gesturing towards Stewart’s car as it came back around, and was hit by the right rear tire, dragged and then tossed about 25 feet. Lying motionless on the track, Ward was then taken to the hospital and pronounced dead on arrival.
Investigators have spoken to Stewart and will remain in contract with him should they need to speak further. They are also looking for any more videos that fans in attendance at the race may have.
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According to reports, the results of Ward’s autopsy revealed he died of massive blunt force trauma. No other information about the autopsy has been revealed by investigators, such as toxicology reports, Sporting News said. Stewart pulled out of Sunday’s Watkins Glen International, after he initially planned to race. He also released a statement saying his “thoughts and prayers” were with Ward’s family. It’s also unclear if Stewart will race at Sunday’s Sprint Cup race in Michigan.
Kevin Ward Sr. and his wife Pamela were at the race, and Ward gave his first remarks since that fateful night in an interview with the Syracuse Post-Standard Tuesday. He addressed why his son got out of his car, as well as Stewart’s role in the accident.
"I think the reason he probably got out of that car is who put him into the wall. He was definitely put into the wall," Ward Sr. said. "Tony Stewart was the best damn driver by far on the track that night. Why he had to go up as high as he did and hog my son, there's no reason for it.
"The one person that knows what happened that night is possibly facing 10 years in prison. Is he going to say what he's done?" Ward Sr. said.
Ward Jr.’s funeral, according to The Post-Standard, will be at 11 a.m. Thursday at South Lewis High School in Turin, New York.