RICHLAND COUNTY — The 18-year-old driver of a BMW that crashed early Friday morning on Shallow Brook Road in Richland County, killing his 16-year-old brother, was intoxicated, according to the S.C. Highway Patrol.
Cameron Stringfellow, of Columbia, is being charged with driving under the influence of a controlled substance, patrol Lance Cpl. Brent Kelly said.
Stringfellow and two passengers, one of them Stringfellows 16-year-old brother, John Cory Stringfellow, were traveling west in the 400 block of Shallow Brook Road near Harwell Drive in a BMW when the car struck a legally parked car around 2:10 a.m. The car went off the right side of the road and hit several trees, Kelly said.
Cameron Stringfellow and front-seat passenger Wesley Thompson, 18, were injured but survived the wreck. Cory Stringfellow died at the hospital. All three were wearing seat belts.
Cameron Stringfellow was treated and released, while Thompson remained in fair condition around 9:30 a.m. Friday, hospital spokeswoman Tammie Epps said.
Richland County Coroner Gary Watts said Cory Stringfellow was pronounced dead at 3:25 a.m.
The three attended Spring Valley High, Richland 2 spokesman Ken Blackstone said. Stringfellow and Thompson are seniors and the 16-year-old was a sophomore.
We are deeply, deeply saddened by the loss of this student, Blackstone said.
He said a crisis response team was on hand at the school to provide counseling to anyone who needed it.
The wreck comes at a time when many high school students are getting ready for graduation. Private schools began their graduations Friday. Public school ceremonies start Wednesday.
Law enforcement agencies are reminding parents to be vigilant about alcohol as teens celebrate such an important moment in their lives. South Carolinas legal drinking age is 21.
A Highway Patrol collision investigation team is looking into the incident to determine if speed or other factors helped contribute to the wreck, Kelly said.