The Ohio State Highway Patrol has identified the driver who was killed Saturday in a car accident after a pursuit.

Matthew S. Stuard, 33, of Mount Blanchard, died after his Honda struck two utility poles on Blanchard Avenue near Fremont Avenue, the patrol said.

The chase began when a trooper clocked Stuard’s vehicle at 57 mph in a 35 mph zone on West Main Cross Street near Interstate 75 around 11:22 p.m. Saturday, the patrol reported. Stuard fled when the trooper attempted to pull him over, according to the patrol.

Stuard struck a stop sign along Ohio 37 during the pursuit. He then turned around and drove toward Findlay, the patrol said. When his car hit the utility poles, it caught on fire.

Stuard was pronounced dead after the fire was extinguished, the patrol reported. Troopers and Findlay police officers were not able to get Stuard out of the car while it was on fire.

Stuard’s passenger, Juan V. Palacios, 44, of Findlay was taken to Blanchard Valley Hospital by Hanco EMS.

The crash remains under investigation. The patrol was assisted at the scene by the Findlay Police and Fire Departments, the Hancock County Sheriff’s Office, and Hanco EMS.

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