Man charged in Heights crash

2013-05-01T16:10:00Z 2013-05-03T11:01:06Z Man charged in Heights crashGazette Staff The Billings Gazette

Bond was set Wednesday at $150,000 for a Billings man accused of causing an early morning head-on collision in the Heights that sent a woman to the hospital.

Eric Lee Gurney, 26, appeared in Justice Court by video from the county jail on felony charges of criminal endangerment and assault on a peace officer.

Gurney is also charged with misdemeanor counts of assault with bodily fluid, aggravated DUI, failure to remain at the scene of an accident, driving without a valid license and driving without insurance.

Judge Pro Tem Lance Lundvall set the high bond after Yellowstone County Attorney Scott Twito said Gurney is on felony probation for a similar case in 2008 where he nearly struck a pedestrian while driving drunk.

According to court records, Gurney was arrested after officers responded to a two-vehicle crash at Lake Elmo Drive and Windsor Circle. A 22-year-old woman had been injured when her Jeep Cherokee was hit head-on by another vehicle.

One of the vehicles then struck a power pole and a house. No one in the house was injured. The female driver was taken to the hospital, but the extent of her injuries was unclear from court records.

Gurney reportedly ran from the crash scene and was found hiding in a nearby ditch, court records state. He is accused of hitting, kicking and scratching one officer and spitting in the face of a second officer before he was arrested.

Gurney refused to perform any sobriety tests or provide a breath sample, court records state. A blood sample was taken for testing at the state crime lab.

Copyright 2014 The Billings Gazette. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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