The Ohio State Highway Patrol said it appears speed was a factor in a single-vehicle crash last Friday, which killed 16-year-old Pickerington boy.
Jacob E. Jolly, 16, was pronounced dead at the scene of a crash which occurred at 10:25 a.m. June 28 on Wright Road, just west of Schoolhouse Road.
According to the highway patrol, Jolly was driving his Chevrolet Cavalier westbound on Wright Road when it left the roadway and struck a utility pole.
Initial evaluations of the vehicle and the crash scene suggest he was driving faster than the posted 50 mph limit, a patrol official stated.
"From this point, it looks like the speed was higher than the posted limit," said Sgt. Russell Pasqualetti. "Our crash reconstruction unit is investigating, and it can come up with the speed and (velocity) information from the air bag module."
Pasqualetti said Jolly wasn't wearing a seatbelt and was ejected from the vehicle.
He couldn't confirm a Columbus Dispatch newspaper story that said Jolly had obtained his driver's license the previous morning, but said Jolly was a "recent driver."
Jolly had just completed his sophomore year at Pickerington High School Central.
A few hours after the crash, Central Principal Zach Howard released a statement which said the school would make counselors available to students and staff Saturday, June 29.
"It is with great sorrow that I share with you that we lost a great young man in a car accident earlier today," Howard said in his statement.
"Jacob Jolly recently completed 10th grade at Pickerington High School Central. He was an outstanding student and vital member of the choir and school community.
"... The entire Pickerington Local School District community extends its heartfelt sympathy to the Jolly family."
Jolly's passengers, Renee Farmer, 15, and Janay Farmer, 16, both of Columbus and whom were identified as the driver's cousins, also were ejected as result of the crash.
Pasqualetti said it appears Janay Farmer was riding in the front seat of the vehicle and her seatbelt broke from the stress of the crash's impact.
He said Renee Farmer wasn't wearing a seatbelt.
Janay Farmer was taken by ambulance to Grant Medical Center and Renee Farmer was flown to the same hospital by MedFlight. They both later were transported to Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus.
An official at Nationwide said both girls remained at the hospital July 1, but would not confirm their conditions.
"I believe one of them is still listed as 'critical,' " Pasqualetti said. "One was severely injured and one had a few broken bones but wasn't 'critical.' "
Pasqualetti said Jolly was violating the terms of his driver's license at the time of the crash because state law forbids drivers younger than 17 years old from having more than one person in the car who is not a family member, unless accompanied by a parent or guardian.
Cousins are not considered to be family members under the law, he said.