Sheriff says no criminal charges will be filed against Tony Stewart
AUG 10, 2014 3:55p ET
Tony Stewart will not face criminal charges right now after a Saturday night incident in which Stewart's car struck and killed 20-year-old Kevin Ward Jr. during a sprint car race at Canandaigua (N.Y.) Motorsports Park.
In a news conference shortly after 3 p.m. ET Sunday, Ontario County (N.Y.) Sheriff Phillip C. Povero said, "At this moment there are no facts or evidence that would support a criminal charge or criminal intent."
In the incident Saturday night, Stewart and Ward crashed, and under caution Ward got out of his car and walked toward Stewart's car, gesturing at the three-time NASCAR champion. As Stewart's car approached Ward, Stewart's right-rear wheel hit Ward, who was thrown into the air and died as a result of the contact.
Stewart was replaced in today's Cheez-It 355 at the Glen by veteran Regan Smith.
The sheriff's office is examining videos from fans who were in attendance and also is awaiting formal autopsy results.
Earlier in the day, Stewart issued the following statement: "There aren't words to describe the sadness I feel about the accident that took the life of Kevin Ward Jr. It's a very emotional time for all involved, and it is the reason I've decided not to participate in today's race at Watkins Glen. My thoughts and prayers are with his family, friends and everyone affected by this tragedy."
Ward's family also issued a statement, saying, "We appreciate the prayers and support we are receiving from the community, but we need time to grieve and wrap our heads around all of this."