JACKSON, Wyo. (AP) Teton County Attorney Steve Weichman has filed five felony charges against the driver and passenger in a pickup truck that killed a bicyclist.
Clinton Wayne Hammers, 22, the driver, is charged with aggravated vehicular homicide and hit and run. Passenger Wyatt Bodray Ditterline, 20, is charged with two counts of being a party to the crime and one as an accessory after the fact.
Grand Teton National Park ranger William Holda said Hammers told park rangers he was changing a compact disc when he hit Jeff Pool, 33, on April 15.
According to court documents, the men had finished a 12-hour shift at their Marbleton area oilfield jobs around 6:30 a.m. They started drinking and smoking marijuana, then headed north to visit Hammers mother in Dubois.
Ditterline allegedly told park rangers he drank two or three mixed vodka drinks and on the road had a few more beers and some vodka. Ditterline said he had a vodka drink while dozing off in the truck, according to the affidavit.
The men allegedly bought a half-gallon of Black Velvet whiskey at a gas station south of Jackson.
Pool was struck near Jackson Hole Airport around 1:24 p.m. Later, Hammers registered .136 percent blood-alcohol and Ditterline registered .088, according to Holda.
The evening of the crash, Hammers and Ditterline both confessed to park rangers that they had hit Poole.
Investigations suggest Pool was biking in the middle of the shoulder when he was struck near the center of the truck.
The curvature of the rear bicycle frame matched the curved design of the truck bumper and transfer marks were consistent with this vehicle impacting the bicycle, the affidavit said.
The bicycle seat impact onto the vehicle hood is consistent, indicating the victims pelvic area impacted the front hood of the vehicle.
Pools body was found 250 feet from the point of impact; his bicycle was 171 feet from the crash site, according to court documents.
A trail of bike helmet pieces, a water bottle, the bike seat, two shoes, the truck grill and plastic bug shield parts were scattered along U.S. 89, according to the affidavit.
Hammers faced a $100,000 bond and Ditterline a $60,000 bond. If convicted, Hammers faces up to 21 years in prison and $15,000 in fines. Ditterline could get up to four-and-a-half years in prison and $8,750 in fines.
Federal attorneys dropped initial charges of driving under the influence and public intoxication. Federal and state attorneys subsequently agreed that the case should be tried in state court.
We kicked this around and agreed that this was first and foremost an aggravated vehicular homicide case, Weichman said.
Hammers probably would have been charged with manslaughter if the case were pursued in federal court, he said.
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