Officials: NC inmate killed in crash after stealing work truck

North Carolina inmate was killed in a crash Monday afternoon after officials said he stole a work truck while on work detail.

Officials with the Department of Public Safety said the inmate, identified as David Woods, was serving a sentence at Gaston Correctional Center. Woods was reported missing just before 1 p.m.

North Carolina Department of Corrections officials said Woods was a minimum custody inmate. He was serving a sentence for second-degree murder and had dozens of infractions while in prison.

Officials said Woods was driving a city of Lowell Ford pickup truck when it crashed at near an exit off I-85.

Witnesses said they saw the pickup truck flip several times and plunge into the ravine.

"I seen that truck just going in the air and just flipping over, over, and over and going into this ravine right there. And then after that, I'd seen a bunch of smoke and dirt and everything. It was pretty devastating," witness Ruth Varney said.

Gastonia police said they are investigating the accident. The Division of Prisons will investigate the circumstances surrounding the inmate's escape.

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