WINFIELD, W.Va. — Putnam County investigators say there are some questions surrounding the death of a popular local athlete which may never be answered. Tyler Kincaid, 20, of Winfield, was killed when he was struck by a train near Scott Depot around 3 a.m. Sunday.
“The dash-cam shows the train’s whistle alerting the victim and the brakes screeching before the collision,” said Putnam County Sheriff Steve Deweese. “Although the whistle was sounded, the victim did not appear to acknowledge the alert.”
The deputy’s report did not indicate if Kincaid was walking toward the train or with his back to the oncoming engine. He was walking in the middle of the railroad. Typically, failure to acknowledge the train would indicate he was otherwise distracted and couldn’t hear, but Deweese said even that is a mystery.
“If the victim was wearing headsets or something it was not found at the scene,” Deweese said.
Deweese said nobody indicated to police why he would have been walking on the railroad at that hour of the morning. Kincaid lived in Scott Depot not far from where he was killed. It’s also unclear if he may have been impaired at the time of the incident. The sheriff said they’ll await toxicology tests to make a determination if alcohol or drugs could have been factors in the death.
“In law enforcement we make sound conclusions based on how and what happened,” said Deweese. “A lot of times in law enforcement we don’t get the ‘how’ and ‘what’.”
Kincaid was a standout athlete at Winfield High School because his graduation. He was on the roster for the West Virginia State University baseball team this past spring.