Update: The driver has now been identified as 30-year-old Jason Oliver of the 200 block of Brooke Drive in Hampton.
Newport News, Va. – One man is dead and another has been injured after police say a car slammed into a utility pole in Newport News on New Year’s Day.
Police responded to the scene at 1:38 a.m. on J. Clyde Morris Blvd. and Diligence Drive.
Rescue workers and medics had to use heavy-duty equipment to remove the two men from the vehicle. The driver of the vehicle died at the scene and the passenger was taken to the hospital with what looked like non-life threatening injuries.
Police say according to witnesses and evidence, they found that the 2008 Cadillac was going east on J. Clyde Morris Blvd. and was speeding when it hit a curb. The car then hit a utility pole and the pole landed about 30 feet away.
They say the car stopped with a second pole midway through the passenger side. Speed and alcohol were factors according to police.
NewsChannel 3 spoke with a couple who were driving home when they say the car sped past them.
“We saw him go right through the red light here at the intersection and he proceeded forward and he lost control of the car and he crashed right into this pole,” explained Tony Graziosi.
He and his wife say they immediately pulled over to try to help.
“One of the gentlemen had already pulled him out – the passenger that was still alive – he had already pulled him out of the car because I guess he was afraid it might go up in flames or something like that,” Graziosi said.
NewsChannel 3 spoke with Belinda Jacobs, who says she is the mother of the passenger in the car, Willie Gilliam.
Jacobs says her son is at Riverside Hospital in the ICU but is expected to be okay.
She says the fact that he is alive is a “miracle” and says she had asked God to watch over him on New Year’s Eve.
Stay with NewsChannel 3 for more updates.