Ohio Deadly Crash SUV Reported Stolen; Survivor Describes Escape

PHOTO: Honda Passport that crashed into a guardrail and flipped over into a swampy pond Sunday morning in Warren, Ohio, March 10, 2013.
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A speeding SUV that hit a guardrail, flipped over and landed upside down in a pond Sunday morning, killing six teenagers, was stolen, according to the vehicle's owner.

The owner filed a stolen-car report with police Monday, police said today. The owner claimed none of the teens in the SUV was related to him or asked to use the vehicle, The Associated Press reported.

It was unclear where the teens got the vehicle or whether they knew it was stolen.

Two boys survived the crash in Warren, Ohio, including Brian Henry, who described the crash and how he survived it to ABC News affiliate WYTV.

Henry, 18, said cold water flooding into the packed, overturned SUV stirred him to consciousness.

Henry and Asher Lewis, 15, were the only survivors of the crash that killed six of their friends, ranging in age from 14 to 19.

Henry told WYTV that he smacked his head on the dashboard and lost consciousness during the crash. It was the cold water that woke him up.

"First thing I thought was that I just wanted to give up," Henry told WYTV. "I was like, I can't go out like that."

Henry tried to smash his way out of the car.

"It took me six or seven times to bust the window," he said.

But when he tried to swim out, he found himself entangled with seatbelts. He had to take off his shoes and pants in order to escape, Henry said.

As the SUV filled with water, Henry and Lewis sprinted a quarter of a mile to the nearest residence so they could call 911.

"I wasn't thinking about myself," Henry said. "I was thinking about the other lives that were left behind to get them help. I didn't care if I was busted up. I just had to get help there first."

Speed a Factor in Crash, Investigators Say

The eight teens had packed into a Honda Passport, which seats five people, and some were likely not wearing seatbelts, authorities said.

It was the deadliest wreck in the history of Trumbull County, located in northeastern Ohio and the worst traffic accident in the state in at least the past three years, Lt. Brian Holt of the Ohio State Highway Patrol said today.

The Honda Passport was traveling at a "high rate of speed" Sunday morning when it veered to the left side of the road and flipped over a guard rail and into a 5-feet deep pond, Holt said. Police did not say how fast the car was traveling, but the crash occurred in a 35 mph zone, the lieutenant said.

The Warren Fire Department responded in two minutes after the 911 call was placed with a dive team, he said, but it may have already been too late.

"They got in the water immediately and they did what they could do," Holt said.

Five teens were removed from the vehicle. Two were taken to the hospital in cardiac arrest, where they died, authorities said. The sixth victim was located underneath the vehicle.

The car was being driven by Alexis Cayson, 19, who died in the crash.

Investigators are trying to piece together what the teens were doing on the road Sunday morning, and how they gained access to the SUV.

Henry told WYTV he was offered a ride home from a friend's house and did not know where the other seven were coming from. He said he had warned Cayson to slow down and said that they were almost home when the car veered off the road.

"Before I turned around and looked at her, the car had jerked out of control. I don't know if she did it on purpose or how fast she was going," he said.

Henry and Lewis were treated for bruising and other injuries and are expected to be key to the investigation.

"They have been extremely cooperative," Holt said. "I'm certain they are grieving, but they are cooperating. Medically speaking, they are going to be just fine."

The other victims were identified as Andrique Bennett, 14, Brandon Murray, 17, and Kirklan Behner, Daylan Ray and Ramone White, all 15 years old.

Warren City Schools Superintendent Michael Notar said grief counselors would be available at schools throughout the district today, where the victims attended classes.

"It was very desperately needed for those who needed to come in and let their feelings out," he said.

Henry said the trauma of the accident is going to stay with him for the rest of his life.

"All of them were my boys that I was with," he said. "They were younger, but they all looked up to me. We all looked out for everybody."

ABC News' Michael S. James contributed to this report.

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