Teen delivering phone books dies in Monday night Hernando crash

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Published October 9 2018
Updated October 9 2018

SPRING HILL An 18-year-old died after the minivan he was riding in was rear-ended on Monday, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

The teen was one of six people riding in a 2005 Dodge Caravan when it stopped along Spring Hill Drive near Treehaven Drive at about 7:15 p.m. to drop off phone books, troopers said.

The driver of the van was Eric Jefferson Stanley, 49. The passengers were La Shelle Renne Stanley, 40; Eric J. Stanley II, 23; Eric J. Stanley III, 7; Verdell Pettis, 21; and Verdell V. Pettis, 18. All are from Port Richey.

A 1996 Ford F-250 pickup truck that was heading west on Spring Hill Drive, driven by Corey John Hare, 28, of Hudson, crashed into the back of the stopped minivan.

Everyone involved in the crash was taken to Regional Medical Center Bayonet Point, according to the Highway Patrol. Verdell V. Pettis was pronounced dead there. The other six people had either no injuries or minor ones, troopers said.

Alcohol was not a factor in the crash, troopers said. Verdell V. Pettis and three others in the minivan were not wearing seat belts. The crash remained under investigation Tuesday.