16-year-old dies in early morning crash on John Belk Freeway

Site of fatal crash early Wednesday near uptown.
Site of fatal crash early Wednesday near uptown. WBTV

One person died in a fatal crash that occurred just before 2 a.m. Wednesday on the eastbound John Belk Freeway near Independence Boulevard.

The victim was identified as William James Blottman, age 16.

Charlotte-Mecklenburg Police said a 2005 Toyota Avalon struck the crash barrier for a concrete pillar that supports the East 7th Street Bridge. Medic staff pronounced the driver dead at the scene. No one else was in the vehicle, officials said.

A preliminary investigation indicates the vehicle was traveling east on John Belk Freeway at a high rate of speed before losing control and striking the pillar. The driver was not wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash, police said. Speed appears to be a contributing circumstance.