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Victim may have been texting at time of crash, West Deer police say

| Tuesday, Feb. 4, 2014, 12:51 a.m.

A Richland man who was killed Saturday night in a West Deer car crash might have been texting at the time of the wreck, according to township police.

Trenton J. Hutton, 21, was killed around 8:30 p.m. when he crashed his 2006 Toyota Scion TC into a guardrail and tree on Middle Road Extension near Lick Road.

Police Chief Jon Lape said further investigation will determine whether Hutton was distracted at the time of the crash.

“Police have found that texting could have been involved based on some evidence on the phone,” he said. “It's a prime example for both kids and adults to look at.”

Hutton was traveling northbound on Middle Road Extension at 8:20 p.m. when the passenger side of his coupe swiped the road's right-hand guardrail. The car then veered across both lanes of the road and struck a tree on the front-right corner. The car spun after impact and came to a rest in the opposite lane, Lape said.

West Deer EMS pronounced Hutton dead at the scene. The cause of death was blunt force trauma to his upper body, according to the Allegheny County Medical Examiner's Office, which performed the autopsy on Monday.

Police don't know how fast Hutton was driving at the time of the crash. There were no icy road conditions and alcohol was not a factor, police said.

Emergency responders shut down Middle Road Extension for more than two hours between Lick and Gibsonia roads to clear the wreck. Crews from West Deer's three fire departments directed traffic along Oak and Bairdford roads while police investigated.

Police are continuing the investigation and will release a report on Tuesday, Lape said.

Hutton was a graduate of Pine-Richland High School.

His family will receive friends on Thursday in Mars.

Braden Ashe is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-226-4673 or bashe@tribweb.com.

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