Energy tycoon Aubrey McClendon made no real attempt to stop his car before slamming into a wall at 90 miles an hour, killing himself in the process, Oklahoma City police said on Monday.Modal Trigger
Aubrey McClendon in August 2007.Photo: AP
On March 2, McClendon, 56, drove his 2013 Chevy Tahoe off a highway road at about 90 miles per hour without wearing a seatbelt before slamming his car into an underpass, Bill Citty, Oklahoma City’s police chief, said at a press conference.
The data, which was pulled from a black box inside the fracking magnate’s car, gave scant details of the last five seconds of McClendon’s life before the head-on impact, which caused the car to erupt in a ball of flames.
While the police chief acknowledged that McClendon “did brake several times,” he noted that there weren’t any skid marks on the road, indicating that the former oil magnate didn’t make an attempt to put sufficient pressure on the brakes to stop his vehicle.
When asked if there was any evidence that his death could be ruled a suicide, Citty said he couldn’t answer that.Modal Trigger
The tycoon faced up to 10 years in prison and a $1 million fine.Photo: Reuters
“I’m not going to speculate on what the tapping of the brake means,” he said.
The top cop added that medical and cellphone records are still being sought, and investigators are still interviewing family members.
McClendon, the founder and former CEO of Chesapeake Energy, was indicted by a federal grand jury less than 24 hours before his death for conspiring to rig oil and gas leases.
Chesapeake was a major player in hydraulic fracturing, or “fracking,” a process of extracting natural gas from the ground. McClendon, who had at one time been a billionaire, was credited with leading Chesapeake to being the second-largest energy company, behind ExxonMobil.
He was also a co-owner of the NBA’s Oklahoma City Thunder basketball team.
Listen to the 911 calls describing this horrifying crash: