For the Star Beacon

CONNEAUT TOWNSHIP, Pa. - - A Conneaut, Ohio, man was killed, and an Edinboro, Pa., man hospitalized, following a three-vehicle crash Tuesday morning at Route 6N and Route 226 in western Erie County, about three miles west of Albion.

Ronald E. Wiley, 34, of Conneaut, died after his eastbound automobile was struck head-on by Benjamin A. Swank, 19, of Edinboro, according to Pennsylvania State Police at Girard, Pa.

Swank, a standout on the General McLane High School basketball and football teams, was driving west on Route 6N behind a van hauling a horse trailer. His Swank's sport utility vehicle was being followed by another westbound truck, state police said.

Swank apparently attempted to turn left onto Route 226 but struck Wiley's auto at 10:34 a.m., police said.

Gareth A. Freeland, 21, of West Springfield, the driver of the westbound pickup truck following Swank's SUV, attempted to avoid the crash and left the road after sideswiping Swank's SUV, police said.

Wiley was pronounced dead at the scene by Sam Steff, deputy Erie County coroner. Wiley's death was ruled an accident, the result of multiple blunt-force trauma.

Swank was taken to Hamot Medical Center in Erie, where he was listed in serious condition Tuesday night.

Freeland wasn't injured in the crash.

Wiley, Swank and Freeland all were wearing seat belts, Pennsylvania State Police said.

Star Beacon Print Edition: 6/27/2007

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