Troopers said an Onslow County man crashed his vehicle into a utility pole at a church parking lot, killing him.
According to investigators, John "Caleb" Sides, of Jacksonville, was driving 35 to 40 mph on the gravel lot of Bible Church Ministries at 266 Bannermans Mill Road, south of Richlands. But Sides lost control and hit the utility pole at about 11:42 p.m. Thursday, troopers said.
Troopers told NewsChannel 12 Sides was not wearing a seat belt and became partially ejected. They also believe alcohol was a factor.
The Trooper on the investigation, Sean Spring, said he is confident that there were two other men with Sides before the crash.
"We do know from witnesses and video that there were two other people out here at least that were with this young man. We want to know what they know," Spring said.
Trooper Spring said they found about 20 empty beer cans scattered around the church as well as a bag containing unopened beer cans.
Trooper Spring also said the two young men went to a home across the street to ask for help. He said a woman from the home called for help, but that the two men were gone before anyone arrived at the scene.
Trooper Spring said he just wants the young men to come forward to help find some answers to this accident.
"Why were they out here? What they were doing, and if they possibly could have helped? We could have avoided this collision. Unfortunately, these are young people. We want to combat this, and stop this from happening again," Spring said.
Investigators are looking into where Sides was before the fatal crash, and are asking anyone with information to come forward.