STEPHENTOWN, N.Y. - The Rensselaer County Sheriff's Office discussed events of a Thursday morning car accident resulting in the death of one passenger, and why it took four hours for deputies to realize it was a fatal crash.
Sheriff Jack Mahar held a press conference Thursday explaining why it took so long for deputies to realize the accident was fatal, saying the driver of the vehicle may not have told anyone.
A call came in around 12:50 a.m. reporting the crash on Cranston Hill Road, off Route 43, in Stephentown. A witness saw the Dodge Neon flip over, and called 911.
The witness stated they saw a white vehicle pulling up to the scene and the driver of the flipped car get out, climb into the other car, and drive away.
When deputies arrived at the scene, they found the car but no occupants. Upon further investigation they discovered the driver, 20-year-old Brandon Hoffman, had been taken to Berkshire Medical Center where he told his father hours after the crash that his best friend and passenger, 24-year-old Christopher Baker, had also been in the car. His father then called the sheriff's office.
"Not until 4:58 this morning did we get a telephone call from the father of the driver who said that Chris was in the car with him," Sheriff Mahar said. "We went back to the scene to do that investigation."
Police say Baker had been ejected more than 100 feet from the wreckage, where his body was found.
"I cannot say how much of an effect that would have had on the condition of the individual until we get the medical reports," Mahar said.
Both men are from Stephentown. At this time there are no charges, but blood results from Hoffman are pending as well as Baker's toxicology results which may bring charges against Hoffman.
The investigation is continuing.
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