Two arrests in Bend fatal hit-and-run
Investigation of fatal hit-run car-bike crash shut Third Street in south Bend for nine hours Tuesday. (KTVZ.COM/Barney Lerten)
Updated: 8:37 AM, Apr. 18, 2007
By Barney Lerten, KTVZ.com
Two arrests have been made, one for hindering prosecution, in the violent hit-and-run death of a bicyclist on Bend's Southeast Third Street early Tuesday, police said.
Capt. Jim Porter confirmed to KTVZ.COM that the alleged driver of the car has been arrested, along with a second person arrested earlier on a charge of hindering prosecution. Their identities, as well as the victim's, should be released later in the day, Porter said. He also confirmed that a car found burned on China Hat Road south of Bend late Tuesday morning is the one believed to have struck the woman bicyclist from behind, at a high rate of speed, as she rode north of Third Street around 2:30 a.m.
The investigation at the crash site - called "horrific" and "horrendous" by officers and other witnesses - shut the busy business thoroughfare for nine hours Tuesday morning.
A newer-model silver Mercedes was sought in the crash, based on pieces of the car strewn on the road - and late Tuesday morning, a car matching that description was found burning about 200 feet off China Hat Road, a mile and a half south of town. Porter said it burned so fiercely there were "puddles of aluminum," and expressed surprise that no neighbor had reported the blaze.
Reed Lane between Third Street and Parrell Road also was closed for the investigation, and officers said the car apparently swerved onto Reed Lane after the collision.
Several officers called it the worst or one of the worst such crashes they had seen.
The road shutdown affected many drivers and workers on one of the city's busiest commercial thoroughfares, through and well past the Tuesday morning rush hour. Many were left wondering what was going on as traffic was detoured onto other streets, including Parrell Road and the Bend Parkway.
Oregon State Police assisted in the crash scene investigation.
Anyone with information on the case was asked to call police at 322-2960.