The driver of a Dodge Charger was traveling 90 mph on George Rogers Boulevard last month before he and three others were killed in a fiery crash.
Brian M. McGrath, 22, was driving too fast for conditions when he lost control of his Charger just before 5 a.m. Jan. 18, according to a Columbia Police Department accident investigation report. Speed was a contributing factor in the crash, the report said.
Rain also may have been a contributing factor, said Jennifer Timmons, Columbia Police spokeswoman.
McGrath was driving south on George Rogers Boulevard from downtown and lost control as he approached a sharp curve going toward Williams-Brice Stadium.
Police could not determine which lane McGrath was driving in before he lost control because there were no skid marks, Timmons said.
The Charger caught fire after the crash. But McGrath and his three passengers were killed upon impact. Three were not wearing seat belts, and police could not determine whether the fourth, a back-seat passenger, had used a seat belt.
Toxicology reports are expected to be released later this week, said Richland County Coroner Gary Watts.
Besides McGrath, a USC senior from Fairfield, Conn., the other victims were Billings S. Fuess IV, 22, of Blythewood; Kelsey “Kel” C. Harris, 23, of Louisville, Ky.; and Melinda “Mindy” S. Pipp, 24, of Columbia. McGrath and Harris were USC students and Fuess was a former student. Pipp worked at Wild Hare Sports Cafe in the Vista.
The four had been seen together at local nightspots in the hours before the crash. Witnesses said they were last seen leaving Uncle Festers, a bar near Huger and Devine streets, sometime after 3:30 a.m., according to previous reports.