Alcohol, excessive speed blamed in Morrisville crash that killed Apex teen, injured 4 others

Monday, November 15, 2021
Vigil held for Apex student who died in crash
Some Apex teens gathered Sunday night for a vigil to mourn 18-year-old Jonathan Pooley, who was killed in a crash that left four other teens injured.

MORRISVILLE, N.C. (WTVD) -- Students at Apex Friendship High School return to class Monday for the first time since a car crash took the life of one of their classmates and injured four others.

The wreck happened about 1:15 a.m. Sunday morning in the 1300 block of Morrisville Parkway near Duck Pond Circle, in front of the Aquatics Center.

Police said a 2015 Honda Civic was going at least 80 mph in the 35 mph speed-limit zone on Morrisville Parkway when the driver, a 17-year-old girl, lost control. The car crossed the median and rolled multiple times before coming to rest, destroying the Aquatics Center's sign in the process.

Two people were ejected from the vehicle. One of them, 18-year-old Jonathan Pooley, was pronounced dead at the scene. The other, an 18-year-old male passenger was in critical condition.

Two other teenagers in the car sustained what police described as "significant" injuries. One went partially through the windshield, police said.

The driver was the only person in the car wearing a seat belt, police said.

On Sunday evening, Morrisville's interim police chief, Pete Acosta, spoke exclusively with ABC11 and said two teens were in critical condition and the other two were stable.

Young people gathered in Apex on Sunday night in a Walmart parking lot for a vigil to mourn and remember Pooley, a student at Apex Friendship High School.

"He was a really sweet person," one teen said. "He was so kind."

Police continue to investigate the crash and said they suspect alcohol, as well as speed, was a factor in the crash.

A friend of Pooley's, who ABC11 is not identifying, visited the crash site later Sunday to mourn.

"So many people are hurt by this. This is just something that needs to be stopped because it keeps happening and happening."

"He took me under his wing. He's such a great person, and it's so sad that he's gone," the friend said. "So many people are hurt by this. This is just something that needs to be stopped because it keeps happening and happening.

This should not have happened to him," she added. "This should not have happened to anyone. We just really need to stop drinking and driving."

Acosta said the driver may face charges.

"We do know that speed is a factor. We do know that at some level, alcohol is a factor," Acosta said. "We anticipate some kind of charges but at this point we just don't know what those charges will be."

See breaking news? Tell us about it here.