Crimetracker: Man found dead in underwater SUV identified

By: Jennifer Stone
By: Jennifer Stone
Police say according to their preliminary investigation, it appears the 1998 Toyota 4-Runner was southbound on Northshore Drive near Town Center Boulevard when Tyler Wheatley, 23, went off the right side of the road.

(WVLT/Herb Goss)

KNOXVILLE, Tenn. (WVLT) -- Knoxville Police have identified the man who died when his SUV became submerged in water early Monday morning.

Police say according to their preliminary investigation, it appears the 1998 Toyota 4-Runner was southbound on Northshore Drive near Town Center Boulevard when Tyler Wheatley, 23, went off the right side of the road. Police say Wheatley overcorrected, went across both lanes of Northshore and hit a guardrail. The SUV flipped over onto its top and landed in the water.

Witnesses spotted the overturned Toyota 4-Runner around 8:30 a.m. in a pond off Town Center Blvd., near the new Target on Northshore Dr. Emergency crews from the police and fire departments as well as the Knox Co. Rescue Squad Dive team responded to the scene and pulled Wheatley from the vehicle.

He was pronounced dead at UT Medical Center later in the morning. The investigation into the cause of the death continued, according to a department spokesperson. Police say Wheatley was wearing a seat belt.


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