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Police said they believe speed and alcohol might be contributing factors in a Wednesday morning crash that resulted in a 53-year-old Lusby man’s death.

Steven Edward Coontz, 53, died after the vehicle he was a passenger in flipped over shortly before 1 a.m. off Rousby Hall Circle in Lusby, according to a press release from the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office. The release states the driver of the vehicle, David Todd Dennison, 37, of Patuxent River, allegedly fled from police after the Calvert County Control Center was alerted to a theft at the Lusby FaStop on H.G. Trueman Road.

Police said in the release an alert came to the control center about 12:37 a.m., reporting a theft from the gas station. An employee gave the control center a description of the vehicle the suspects were driving and said another FaStop employee had followed the vehicle to another Lusby address. Sheriff’s office Deputy L. Wood responded to the address and was advised the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office reported to the control center that a vehicle similar to the suspect’s vehicle had been reported stolen from Lexington Park. Wood did not locate the vehicle at the initial address he had been provided.

Wood then went to the FaStop to obtain more information regarding the theft, according to the sheriff’s office. Wood and Dfc. Wilson went inside the FaStop, and as they were stepping out of the business, they reportedly saw the suspect vehicle parked at the pumps, and Dennison was attempting to purchase gas. The deputies approached the vehicle, and Dennison allegedly jumped in the driver’s seat and sped off, heading West on Rousby Hall Road.

Police searched the area but initially did not find the vehicle. A St. Mary’s County deputy who was assisting in the search located the car overturned in the woods about 17 minutes later off eastbound Rousby Hall Circle, according to the release. Calvert deputies arrived on the scene and called for emergency medical services. Members of the Solomons Volunteer Rescue Squad and Fire Department, St. Leonard Volunteer Fire Department and Lexington Park Volunteer Rescue Squad arrived to assist.

Coontz, Dennison and another passenger, Amanda Nicole Gott, 25, of Lusby all were transported to Calvert Memorial Hospital in Prince Frederick for treatment. Coontz later died from the injuries he sustained in the crash, according to the sheriff’s office. Gott and Dennison later were transported to MedStar St. Mary’s Hospital for further observation for non-life threatening injuries.

Capt. Steve Jones from the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office said charges for the stolen car would be coming from St. Mary’s County, and Dennison also would likely be charged with theft from the FaStop, but that will be determined after the case goes through the state’s attorney’s office.

The crash is being investigated by the Calvert County Sheriff’s Office Crash Reconstruction Unit. Anyone with information is asked to contact Dfc. C Childress at 410-535-2800 or email childrcj@co.cal.md.us.

“This is an unfortunate accident and our condolences to the family of Mr. Coontz,” Sheriff Mike Evans (R) said in the release, where he also extended thanks to EMS personnel and the St. Mary’s County Sheriff’s Office.

Rob perry

Staff writer Sara Newman contributed to this report.