An Erath County man who barely survived a vicious beating in February died Thursday in a car accident.

Ricky Stephens, 44, was killed in Vernon Parish, Louisiana, in a single car accident.

”We were notified about the accident just after 10 p.m. Thursday,” Sheriff Tommy Bryant said. “The family has also been notified.”

According to the Louisiana State Police, the accident happened about 8 p.m. Thursday when a 2003 Dodge pickup driven by Stephens exited the roadway and careened into a tree.

Stephens was wearing a seatbelt, but was pronounced dead at the scene.

Routine toxicology tests are pending.

On Feb. 17, Stephens was found beaten, burned and partially castrated on property located on FM 205.

The crime was so brutal that it shocked veteran law enforcement officials and left an entire community shaken.

The suspects were on the run for months before they were finally taken into custody.

Danny Dittoe, Lanny Walton and Dustin Davis are being held at Erath County Jail in connection with the case.

Bryant said he met with District Attorney Alan Nash Friday to discuss the case.

“We have enough evidence and witness statements to proceed with the case against the suspects,” Bryant said