DPS: Speed, alcohol played part in teen’s death

The Texas Department of Public Safety has determined that speed and alcohol were factors in the all-terrain-vehicle crash that killed 16-year-old Stevie Rae Hergert in Newton County on Saturday.
“Currently, DPS is diligently working to determine how the minors got the alcohol, according to a press release from DPS Trooper Stephanie Davis. “The Texas Department of Public Safety will continue its investigation until a final conclusion is made based solely on the evidence and facts of this crash.”
A social media account with Hergert’s name and photo featured a post, allegedly made by Hergert on July 30 talking about an upcoming trip to a deer lease and drinking beer. The last post, dated July 31, said, “we have 160 beers I repeat 160.”
Hergert was driving a 2009 Polaris Ranger ATV with two passengers at the time of the crash on County Road 1114 at the intersection of CR 1115 in Newton County. At about 3 a.m. Hergert lost control and flipped the ATV. She was thrown off and suffered fatal head injuries. The two passengers, Bryce Hoffpauir, 18, of Nederland and Nicholas Fesmire, 19, of Nederland were also thrown off and sustained only minor injuries.
Evidence collected at the scene led troopers to believe alcohol contributed to the crash. Toxicology results are pending.
Hergert was a rising senior at Port Neches-Groves High School and was employed as a cashier at Bruce’s Market Basket in Groves. She was described as a bright, energetic student looking forward to her senior year.
A GoFundMe site has been established to help the family and can be found at www.gofundme.com/steviehergert
Funeral services will be at 10 a.m., Thursday, Aug. 6, at Levingston Funeral Home in Groves. Burial will be at Magnolia Cemetery in Beaumont.
A visitation for family and friends will be held Wednesday evening from 5 to 8 p.m. at the funeral home.
E-mail: mary.meaux@panews.com
Twitter: MaryMeauxPANews

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