The teen who died in an early Sunday morning crash in Colonie did so while driving a minivan stolen from a pastor who lives in Schenectady and while fleeing from an attempted traffic stop in the city, authorities said Monday.
Police identified the driver who died as 17-year-old Akbar Perkins of Schenectady.
Perkins died in the 2:51 a.m. crash on Central Avenue at Route 155 when the minivan left the road, hit a utility pole and overturned.
Two passengers in the minivan, both believed to be 15, were injured but survived. Paramedics took them to Albany Medical Center with serious injuries.
Colonie police did not identify them due to their ages.
The incident began when a Schenectady County sheriff’s deputy attempted to stop the minivan, a 2004 Ford Freestar, on Upper State Street, but the driver fled, Schenectady County Sheriff Dominick Dagostino said.
The deputy spotted the van going at a high rate of speed and determined the van to be stolen.
When the deputy attempted to make the stop, the van sped off. The deputy, lights and sirens on, then gave chase at a distance.
Dagostino said his department is investigating, but “all indications point to the officer operating well within our protocol and policies.”
Dagostino also confirmed that the Ford Freestar is the same minivan stolen a week earlier from the Schenectady home of Clifton Park Assembly of God Church Pastor Dwight Moore.
Moore, who lives with his wife on Pinewood Avenue, left the residence the morning of July 10 for Sunday morning service and discovered both his Freestar and 2006 Honda CRV missing. The CRV remains missing.
A family friend started a Go Fund Me page last week to help the Moore family. By late afternoon on Monday, the page had raised just under $7,900.
Colonie police have asked that anyone with information about the crash contact them at 782-2620.
Reach Gazette reporter Steven Cook at 395-3122, email@example.com or @ByStevenCook on Twitter.