LA MARQUE, Texas — Police said they suspect alcohol and speed contributed to a deadly crash in which a young couple was thrown from a pickup when it ran into a ditch and rolled.
Ryan Parker 22, of Hitchcock, and his girlfriend, Carissa Jackson, 19, of Santa Fe, were pronounced dead at 8:20 a.m. Wednesday of injuries suspected to have occurred during the crash, John Florence, a spokesman with the Galveston County Medical Examiner’s Office, said.
It is unknown what time the truck, which was traveling east on FM 1764, left the south side of the highway, Florence said.
La Marque police officer Ken Cagnon was investigating to determine when the couple had last been seen alive. He said he thought Parker had made a cell phone call about 1:30 a.m.
Police also were investigating the cause of the crash, which happened about three-quarters of a mile west of Interstate 45.
"Beer cans were thrown all over the scene," Cagnon said, noting an autopsy would confirm whether alcohol was a factor in the crash.
Because both occupants were thrown from the pickup, it is unclear who drove, Cagnon said.
"The truck swerved toward the center lane, overcorrected and rolled into a major county ditch," Cagnon said.
The couple was thrown from the 1996 Ford F-150, and the truck flipped several times, Cagnon said.
The wreck was first reported by a passer-by at 7:19 a.m., Cagnon said. "I guess the fog lifted, and when it got daylight, somebody observed an accident in the ditch," Cagnon said.
The truck, which was damaged on the driver’s side, came to rest against a dump truck parked about 100 yards off the road, Cagnon said.
"The driver’s side slammed against the dump truck, and the passenger side did not have much damage," Cagnon said. "Even the first-responding officer when he looked at it thought it was just parked there."
Passers-by couldn’t see the couple from the road, Florence said. The truck was registered to Parker’s stepfather, but Jackson had owned the pickup at some point, Cagnon said.
The couple had not been wearing seat belts, Cagnon said.