Grand Jury to Review Evidence in Ward Death


The Ontario County District Attorney in the state of New York has taken all evidence into the investigation into Kevin Ward, Jr.’s death to the grand jury.

Ward died after being struck by the rear of a sprint car driven by NASCAR driver Tony Stewart during a dirt track competition at Canandaigua Motorsport Park on Aug. 9. Ward and Stewart had contact on lap 14 which created a caution. It was during the caution when Ward exited his racecar and walked onto the dirt racing surface. Stewart passed by and hit Ward as he was approaching Stewart’s racecar. The impact resulted mortal injuries. Ward died of massive blunt trauma, according to an autopsy.

Ontario County District Attorney Michael Tantillo stated in a news release on Tuesday that he has reviewed all information contained in the investigation involving Tony Stewart and will submit the evidence to a grand jury “for their determination as to what action should be taken in this matter”.

All evidence in the case will soon be presented to the Ontario County grand jury.

Tantillo commented that the grand jury proceedings are confidential but he will present information in the near future. He will not be able to release any information about potential witnesses or testimony. He added that when the presentation has been completed and a determination has been made, he will report the results.

NASCAR Chief Communications Officer Brett Jewkes offered this statement: “We are aware of the completed investigation and the announced next steps. First, our thoughts continue to be with all who have been impacted by this tragedy. We will monitor this process and stay in close contact with Stewart-Haas Racing. It would be inappropriate for NASCAR to comment on this case so we will continue to respect the process and authorities involved.”