Teen Killed While Crossing Route 196 in Monroe County

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COOLBAUGH TOWNSHIP -- David Essington, 17, was on his way home from his part-time job at Kalahari Resorts when police say he was hit and killed by a man driving on Route 196 on Monday night.

Essington was crossing the street to get his home in A Pocono Country Place in Coolbaugh Township.

Community Police Chief Kurt Cummings knew the teen who was a senior at Pocono Mountain West High School.

"He was happy, full of life from what I've met of him. I've seen him sing in the Urbane Choir and I was fortunate enough to record some video of him and the choir and take some photos. He was just a beautiful person," Chief Kurt Cummings, A Pocono Country Place.

Pocono Mountain Regional Police are investigating the incident.

Police say the teen was hit by Joaquin Soltren, 54, of Tobyhanna.

Authorities could not say if or when any charges might be filed.

Because so many people have been hit and even killed on this stretch of Route 196, the community is now working together to find a way to prevent it. One way is making reflective vests like this more accessible to the community.

"If we can save one life a year, one life in five years. It is worth it," said Ed Wood, Coolbaugh Township.

Ed Wood lives in Coolbaugh Township. He says this latest incident was an eye-opener.  He purchased 300 reflective vests and plans to give them out to community members for free.

"What we are going to do is give them out to police, Pocono Pony perhaps, Chief Cummings in A Pocono Country Place. We are gonna give out the first 300. If it works, I'll order 1,000, 2,000 more. Too many, at least 10 people died on this road this year and there is really nothing we can do but brighten them up," said Wood.

The incident is still under investigation.

The reflective vests will be made available to community members in about a week.

A GoFundMe page has been set up to help Essington's family.


  • Rodrick Webb

    Some of you heartless people kill me. Where is your compassion? Someone lost their life!!! How do you know that they were not paying attention to their surroundings by being on the phone? Were you there?!!!? Did you see the incident first hand?!!!? What if the driver was trying to speed around a stopped or slow moving bus because they were impatient and didn’t want to wait? Get a life and stop criticizing and blaming people if you weren’t even there to witness it first hand!!!

  • jrac

    this is awful. so many people are getting hit on one stretch of road, maybe they should put down speed bumps or a light… do SOMETHING to slow these drivers down! it can’t solely be the fault of the pedestrians, especially when this has happened more than once…
    rest in peace, david.

  • sooshmoo

    The issue here is not pedestrians, it’s the DRIVERS. I live in PCP and take that stretch to work and back every day. People fly by you, you can hear their music thumping, see them talking on their cell phones. No one pays attention to what’s in front of them. Too much distracted driving. This area in particular is just terrible. I hate to be cliche, but I honestly believe a lot of it is people from NY, NJ etc. thinking you can drive here like you do there. You just F*cking can not! Ticket those assh0les speeding, straddling lanes. Don’t blame pedestrians.

  • Pay up

    Well the reflective vest are readily available! Just about all hardware stores and all chains have them. If your gonna cross s road look left right left right left right left and not be texting or distracted while your walking either! It’s not the motorist fault and why does wnep mention his name when it wasn’t?

    • Ronald

      I’m pretty sure if you hit a pedestrian the driver is the at fault party. You seem like you have a guilty conscious…also have a little sympathy, a kid was killed

  • Lloyd Schmucatelli

    How in the hell are there so many freaking pedestrians hit around here all the time?

    Doesn’t anyone pay attention to their surroundings?

  • maria

    As we can all see there are mentally ill people among us. WARNINGFAKENEWS needs to be in an institution for the insane. Has to hide behind a computer. Say this crap out in public and see how hard you get beat!

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