GPS unit finds dead car thief

Published 12:00 am Monday, November 19, 2007

POWELLSVILLE – What apparently started as an auto theft ended in death here Thursday.

Edward E. Clemons, 42, of Brown’s School Road in Colerain, was found dead Friday in a stolen vehicle off the shoulder of Dilday Road, approximately 2.1 miles southeast of Powellsville.

It was determined from a GPS locator in the car that the fatal accident occurred at 4:03 p.m. Thursday.

Clemons, driving a 2004 Mitsubishi passenger car, was traveling east on Dilday Road when the vehicle apparently crossed the center line, ran off the road to the left and struck a culvert.

The car is said to have then gone airborne and overturned before it came to rest in the bushes on the left side of the road.

GPS determined that the car was traveling at 69 m.p.h. when the accident occurred. Clemons was not wearing a seat belt, according to First Sergeant K. P. Pitts of the North Carolina Highway Patrol Troop A District II (Bertie, Hertford and Gates counties).

&uot;He was not wearing a seat belt and there was alcohol involved,&uot; Pitts stated.

The vehicle was not located until 11:14 a.m. Friday, at which time Clemons was found deceased.

The GPS locator apparently belonged to the owner of the car, a parolee who is a convicted sex offender and required to carry a locator on his person at all times.

Allegedly, the car’s owner had left his locator in the car and upon realizing his car had been stolen, notified his probation officer, who ran a trace on the vehicle.

&uot;Clemons had been partying with this guy during the day, and then he (Clemons) later stole his car,&uot; Pitts said.

After the coordinates were initially sent out, searchers could not at first find the car due to it being in the bushes, but they eventually located it Friday morning.