The coroner’s office has identified a Zion man, a Waukegan man and a third man who were all killed when a car drove off the roadway into a tree and became engulfed in flames in Gurnee.
Lake County Chief Deputy Coroner Steve Newton said Wednesday that the victims were Javon Stribling, 27, of Zion; Emmanuel Gaiter, 36, of Waukegan; and Gregory McClain, 27, of Calumet City.
Autopsies on the three confirmed they died from blunt force injuries as a result of a vehicle crash.
The Gurnee Police Department and Gurnee Fire Department responded around 2:15 a.m. Sunday to Route 132 and North Greenleaf Street.
It was initially reported as a vehicle on fire but the fire was later determined to have been the result of a crash.
Officers arrived and noticed large flames coming from the tree line along Grand Avenue near North Greenleaf St, according to the Gurnee Police Department.
Responding officers discovered a Jeep SUV on fire and the fire department extinguished the fire.
Officers learned three people, later identified as Stribling, Gaiter and McClain, were inside the vehicle and all were dead, police said.
Officers were unable to immediately identify the victims inside at the time.
Investigators with the Lake County Major Crash Assistance Team (MCAT) responded to the scene and aided with the crash investigation.
Grand Avenue between First Street and Greenleaf Street was closed in both directions during the investigation.
Gurnee Police Department Public Information Officer Shawn Gaylor told the Chicago Tribune that the crash was “one of the worst crashes we have experienced.”
“Due to the amount of damage at the crash scene, it will require significant follow up and investigation to confirm any information,” Gaylor said.
The cause of the crash remains under investigation by MCAT and the Gurnee Police Department.