ThatsRacin

Tony Stewart will learn DA’s decision next week

Michael Tantillo, the district attorney for Ontario County, N.Y., plans to make a decision next week whether to charge NASCAR driver Tony Stewart in the death of fellow racer Kevin Ward Jr.

On Thursday, the Ontario County Office of Sheriff announced it had completed its investigation into the Aug. 9 incident at Canandaigua (N.Y.) Motorsports Park in which a sprint car driven by Stewart struck and killed Ward, who was walking on the track while the race was under caution.

In a news release, the sheriff’s office said it had submitted what it described as a “thorough” investigation to the district attorney’s office for review, including a recently received forensic video enhancement completed by the New York State Police laboratory in Albany, N.Y.

The sheriff’s office has been in possession of at least two videos of the incident, only one of which has been viewed by the public.

Mike Arning, a spokesman for Stewart, declined to comment on Thursday’s announcement.

“We will respect the entire investigative process through its completion,” he said.

Stewart did not race in the Cup race at Watkins Glen, N.Y., the day after the incident and sat out races at Michigan and Bristol, Tenn., as well. He returned to competition at the Aug. 31 race at Atlanta.

In his two races since returning to NASCAR competition, Stewart finished 41st and 15th and failed to qualify for the 10-race Chase, which determines the series champion.

During the Atlanta race weekend, Stewart made his first public comments since Ward’s death, saying the incident “will affect my life forever.”

“This is a sadness and a pain I hope no one ever has to experience in their life,” he said.

Stewart is entered in Sunday’s Cup race at Chicagoland Speedway.

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