Police suspect that alcohol played a role in the car accident that killed former Auburn tight end Philip Lutzenkirchen and one other man Sunday morning, according to Al.com.
Per the traffic crash report, police believe that “each of the four occupants” used alcohol.
The driver of the car, University of Georgia student Joseph Davis, and Lutzenkirchen died at the scene shortly after 3 a.m. Sunday in Troup County, Ga. According to police, Davis failed to stop at a stop sign of a T-intersection. The vehicle crossed an intersecting road and impacted multiple ditches before hitting a fence, going airborne and overturning several times.
Lutzenkirchen, who was not wearing a seatbelt, was ejected from the vehicle. Davis was “partially ejected” and was also not wearing a seatbelt. The two survivors of the crash were both injured and transported to West Georgia Health Systems.
Blood toxicology tests were performed on both Lutzenkirchen and Davis, and a police spokesman said the tests will take “weeks to complete.”
Reports indicate that an officer was dispatched to the scene after the two survivors of the crash knocked on the door of a resident who lived near the scene and asked her to call police. A state trooper “arrived on the scene at 3:50 a.m.” and other trooper “arrived at 4:17 a.m.,” a Georgia State Patrol spokesperson said Monday.
Lutzenkirchen, a native of Marietta, Ga., made 59 career catches for the Tigers and is the school’s all-time leader for career touchdown receptions by a tight end. He caught game-winning touchdowns in three games in his career, including the 2010 Iron Bowl against Alabama.
"On the field, Philip was a great player and competitor, but more importantly, he was a great teammate and friend off the field," said Auburn head coach Gus Malzahn. "My thoughts and prayers are with Philip’s parents, Mike and Mary, and all of his family and friends who are grieving his passing. This is a sad day for the entire Auburn family. I find peace knowing that even though Philip was taken from us too soon, that he lived his life to the fullest, leaving a lifetime of great memories for his family and friends to cherish forever."
He signed with the St. Louis Rams as an undrafted free agent in 2013, but was released. He most recently worked as a volunteer assistant football coach at St. James School in Montgomery, Ala.
Auburn fans gathered at Toomer’s Corner on Sunday in Lutzenkirchen’s memory.
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