- Associated Press - Sunday, March 2, 2014

OPELOUSAS, La. (AP) - A passenger in a pickup headed north on Louisiana Highway 35 was killed after the truck hit a culvert, causing it to flip several times.

State police say 31-year-old Curtis Wheeler, of Church Point, was not wearing a seatbelt and was ejected. He was pronounced dead at the scene.

The truck’s driver, 25-year-old Brad Wheeler, also of Church Point, was transported in critical condition. He, too, was not wearing a seatbelt and was ejected.

Authorities did not indicate whether the men were related.

Troopers say it happened about 2:46 a.m. Sunday in St. Landry Parish. Investigators suspect alcohol was a factor. Routine toxicology samples will be submitted for analysis.

Once released from the hospital, Brad Wheeler faces charges of vehicular homicide, reckless operation and no seat belt.

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