Triad Man Accused of Driving 120MPH, Causing 5-Car Collision

BLACK MOUNTAIN - The man who caused a five-vehicle collision in downtown Black Mountain last month and severely injured the head coach of the Montreat College men's and women's track and field teams was traveling 100 miles over the town's speed limit at the time of the crash, according to arrest warrants filed Thursday at the Buncombe County Courthouse.

Kyle Donte Carney, 30, of Winston-Salem, was operating a 2015 Nissan Altima on East State Street at a speed of 120 mph, warrants state. The speed limit on the street is 20 mph.

Carney faces traffic violations of speeding, reckless driving to endanger, and driving left of center, according to court documents. His bond was set at $10,000 unsecured.

He was scheduled to appear in Buncombe County District Court on May 3, court records show.

He also has pending charges in Greensboro including speeding, driving while impaired, driving while license revoked, failure to burn headlamps, and possessing an open container of alcohol, according to court records.

Carney has no history of being convicted in the state, according to the N.C. Department of Public Safety.

The crash occurred around 7 p.m. Feb. 27 at the intersection of East State Street and N.C. 9.

Carney was driving west on Interstate 40 at a high rate of speed, and exited the interstate at exit 65 onto U.S. 70 West, police say. When he exited the interstate he damaged the guard rail, and as he was traveling on East State Street he veered left of the center line, according to a search warrant filed in the investigation.

As he entered the intersection of Montreat Road and East State Street, he struck a 2004 Mazda sedan. Three other vehicles were hit as a result.

A search warrant filed in the investigation state that police found an empty bottle of champagne in Carney's vehicle, but it is unknown if Carney was intoxicated at the time of the collision.

Carney and another person were sent to Mission Hospital with critical injuries, while other people were treated at the scene and released, according to police.

Debris from the collision also caused extensive window damage to Town Hardware, a local hardware and general store that opened in 1928.

Minutes before the Black Mountain collision occurred, an accident report filed by the N.C. State Highway Patrol shows that Carney was involved in a hit and run collision with property damage on Interstate 40 westbound near Old Fort at 6:56 p.m.

Carney was traveling at 70 mph in a 55 mph zone of the interstate about 2 miles from U.S. 70, according to the report. While Carney was approaching a sharp curve he was in the outer lane and attempted to change lanes, but collided with another vehicle.

The driver who was hit pulled off to the side of the interstate, but Carney continued on without stopping, an accident report states. The vehicle that was hit sustained about $1,000 in damages.

Warrants were issued Thursday afternoon charging Carney with misdemeanor hit and run, and misdemeanor careless and reckless driving, according to Sgt. Kevin Owens with the State Highway Patrol.

Owens said the State Highway Patrol was still following up on the Feb. 27 incident Thursday.

"We're still following up and putting more pieces back together as to whether this was a preceding event to the big crash in Black Mountain or if this was a continuous pattern of (Carney's) bad driving."

Owens said authorities do not know if the hit and run on I-40 and the five-vehicle collision in downtown Black Mountain were directly related.

The Black Mountain Police Department were also still investigating the collision Thursday.

Britten Olinger, the head coach of the Montreat College men's and women's track and field teams, was driving the 2004 Mazda sedan and suffered critical injuries, according to family members.

Olinger remained in the hospital Thursday after undergoing spinal surgery Wednesday, his wife, Samantha, wrote on the family's GoFundMe page. As of Thursday the campaign had raised $85,256 of a $150,000 goal.

He suffered a severed spinal cord, fractures to his pelvis and lower back, a broken arm, and a small brain bleed, and has traumatic injury to his lungs, according to Olinger's sister, Nancy Quesenberry.

Family members say Olinger, who has dedicated the last decade of his life to coaching runners and recently became a father of a 10-month-old, will never walk again due to his injuries.

Since the crash several schools, businesses and individuals have lent support to the Olingers.

One benefit will take place at 5 p.m. Friday at Lookout Brewing Company in Black Mountain, according the brewery's Facebook page.

"Lookout Brewing is teaming up with Fresh Pizza for a benefit party for Coach Britten Olinger, who was injured in a car accident in Black Mountain," the brewery wrote. "Join us for cold beers, the Fresh Pizza food truck and live music! A portion of our proceeds will go directly towards supporting Coach O's recovery and his family."

There is also a Facebook group where family members and friends are updating Olinger's progress and sharing ways to help support the family.

Asheville Citizen-Times


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