KODAK, Tenn. (WATE) – Two teenagers were killed late Tuesday in a crash off Pollard Road, according to the Tennessee Highway Patrol.
The Sevier County Sheriff’s Office said a fatal late-Tuesday crash near Pollard Road into the French Broad River was being investigated by THP.
Initial reports from THP indicated the crash allegedly occurred following a pursuit by law enforcement.
The car the teens were in was discovered in the river, with multiple agencies responding early Wednesday morning in the Dumplin Valley and Pollard Road areas.
Aaron Baker, 19, and a juvenile teen were killed in the crash. Baker had been driving the car and had not been wearing a seatbelt.
THP said late Wednesday Baker’s 2006 Mitsubishi Gallant left the roadway on Pollard Road after attempting to evade a Sevier County Sheriff’s deputy; saying it was not an active pursuit.
The car went off the roadway and traveled down an embankment, then entered the river and was submerged.
Investigators believe the crash occurred after SCSO deputies saw a car traveling at a high rate of speed on Douglas Dam Road.
According to SCSO, shortly before 11 p.m. Tuesday, deputies saw the speeding vehicle and “attempted to catch up with” the driver.
“Due to the speed of the vehicle, the Deputies were only able to make out the tail lights from the great distance,” a media release states on the incident. “One of the Deputies believed that the vehicle turned onto Pollard Road.”
As the deputies checked the area of Pollard Road and the Pollard Cemetery Road they believe the driver may have crashed after finding debris from a vehicle and noticed a damaged gate, leading to the French Broad River.
THP was then contacted to the investigate the crash.
WATE 6 On Your Side is working to learn more about this incident and will update as additional details are shared by officials.