West Virginia man killed when ATV hits dog in Greene County

  • By Mike Jones March 8, 2014

A 21-year old West Virginia man died Friday night when he struck a dog and then crashed while riding his all-terrain vehicle in Greene County.

Benjamin Lee McConnell of Fairview was riding his ATV alongside two other friends on Blockhouse Run Road in Gilmore Township shortly before 10 p.m. when he hit the dog that ran directly into his path on the road, Greene County Deputy Coroner Mary Lewis said.

State police Trooper Michael Larkin said McConnell then lost control of the ATV and it flipped over. He was thrown from the vehicle onto the road and died at the scene, Larkin said.

The dog survived, although the severity of its injuries was not known. Lewis did not know who owned the animal.

“The dog ran up the road, and he hit the back of it,” Lewis said.

Police did not identify the two other men riding with McConnell at the time of the crash. They were not involved in the crash and were able to speak to investigators about the incident, Larkin said.

Larkin said the ATVs the three men were driving were not licensed to use public roadways.

“There are some exceptions for ATVs, but that one did not fall under the that,” Larkin said.

He did not know how fast McConnell was traveling or if the ATV’s lights were on at the time of the crash near 119 Blockhouse Run Road. Larkin said he is still investigating the crash and did not know if the two other men will be cited for riding ATVs on a public street.

An autopsy for McConnell was scheduled for Saturday afternoon to determine the cause of death.

Mike Jones has been a news reporter since 2005, covering crime, state and municipal government, education and energy. In addition to working at the Observer-Reporter, he also has spent time at the Charleston (W.Va.) Daily Mail and Patch.com. He holds a journalism degree from West Virginia University.


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