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Driver killed when car runs off road, hits fence

September 22, 1998

A 17-year-old Hagerstown youth was killed and three passengers in the car he was driving were injured after he lost control of the car and hit a fence on Old Forge Road on Monday, Maryland State Police said.

State police said Michael Lee Evans, of 224 N. Cleveland Ave., Hagerstown, was pronounced dead at Washington County Hospital after the 4:20 p.m. accident.

Officials at the state medical examiner's office said an autopsy will be performed today to determine exact cause of death.

Passengers Joseph A. Degrange, 16, of 328 S. Potomac St., Hagerstown; Alex R. Hoeckel, 17, of 13118 Willow Road, Hancock, and Michael L. McCarthy, 18, of 8 Hillside Road, Hancock, were treated and released, a hospital spokeswoman said.

Police said Evans was speeding and "hill-hopping" down Old Forge Road, north of Clopper Road, when the 1995 Toyota Corolla he was driving ran off the right side of the road.

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The driver's side of the car slammed into a board rail fence, said Trooper Greg Heiston.

Heiston said a piece of the wooden fence went through the windshield and hit Evans.

Although it rained heavily later Monday night, the accident was the result of speed and not poor weather, he said.

Heiston said the road is posted at 30 miles per hour. He was unsure how fast Evans was driving.

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