No Charges for Racer Tony Stewart

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Sylvania 300 - QualifyingNEW YORK —  NASCAR driver Tony Stewart will not face charges in connection with the on-track crash that killed sprint car racer Kevin Ward, Jr.

The Ontario County D.A. announced Wednesday that the grand jury found no reason to move on with the case, but Ward’s family could still file a civil lawsuit.

Stewart, a three-time NASCAR top series champion, was driving a dirt-track car August 9 when the right rear tire hit Ward, who was walking on the track as cars slowly circled during a break in an Empire Super Sprints series in Canandaigua, New York.

Ward, 20, died of massive blunt trauma before paramedics could get him to a hospital.

“After listening to and questioning all the witnesses and reviewing all of the evidence, the grand jury has decided that there is no evidence to charge Tony Stewart with any crimes.” District Attorney Michael Tantillo told reporters.

The Ontario County grand jury heard testimony from more than two dozen witnesses and reviewed photos and videos before making its decision, Tantillo added.

“This has been one of the toughest tragedies I’ve ever had to deal with, both professionally and personally,” Stewart said. “And this is something that will affect my life forever.”