A 40-year-old man who died on the side of Sunrise Highway in East Patchogue on Friday night after suffering an apparent medical event was identified by Suffolk County police Sunday as Timothy Welch of East Patchogue.
Welch had pulled over to the shoulder just east of Route 112 shortly before 7:15 p.m., where witnesses saw him get out of the car and vomit, homicide Det. Lt. Kevin Beyrer said.
Welch then went around to the grassy side of the shoulder before making it back to the driver’s side of his Toyota Prius, where he fell face down, police said.
“Some people stopped to help him, and some rubberneckers see this happening and they get into secondary accidents,” Beyrer said.
There were several fender-benders, but no one had to be taken to the hospital, police said.
A physician assistant from the medical examiner’s office pronounced Welch dead at the scene. An autopsy will determine the exact cause of death, authorities said.
The eastbound lanes of Sunrise Highway had been shut down during a busy Friday rush hour as police investigated late into the night, but were reopened by midnight.
Initial reports that Welch suffered facial and head trauma turned out not to be true once police and the physician assistant examined the body more closely, authorities said.
With Lisa Irizarry