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Stephens City woman dies in crash

22-year-old victim in late-night Tuesday collision is 15th person to perish on roads in Frederick County this year

By Alex Bridges -- abridges@nvdaily.com

STEPHENS CITY -- The toll in fatal crashes in Frederick County reached 15 Tuesday night following a two-vehicle crash northwest of Stephens City.

Laura Margaret Ruscito, 22, of Stephens City, died as a result of injuries she sustained in the crash on Springdale Road shortly before 11 p.m., according to state police spokesman Sgt. F.L. "Les" Tyler. The crash also sent three other people to Winchester Medical Center.

Ruscito was a passenger in a 2005 Chevrolet Corvette that crashed into a 2003 Nissan Xterra SUV near Shady Elm Road, Tyler said.

The Chevrolet was traveling south on Springdale Road (Va. 649) when the driver lost control, according to Tyler. The vehicle veered to the left into the wrong lane and struck the oncoming Nissan at 8:55 p.m. approximately three-tenths of a mile west of Shady Elm Road (Va. 651), Tyler said.

Rescue workers transported the driver of the Chevrolet, Todd Michael Riley, 24, of Stephens City, to the hospital. Responders also took the driver of Toyota, Nathan Manuel, 29, of Front Royal, and a passenger, Sabrina L. See, 34, to the hospital. Information on the extent of their injuries was not available.

All occupants were wearing seat belts at the time of the crash, according to Tyler.

Trooper W.A. Connelly is investigating the crash. Asked whether police have placed charges in the crash, Tyler said the incident remains under investigation. Tyler offered the same response when asked whether the investigation revealed any factors that may have contributed to the crash, such as alcohol or drugs, distracted driving, speed or poor road conditions.

Ruscito is the 15th person to die in a motor-vehicle crash in Frederick County this year.

Fatal crashes in the county in 2010 claimed the lives of nine victims, according to data collected by the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles.

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