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Four of five victims in June 3 crash intoxicated; most labeled 'homicide'

Jun 15, 2017 - By Katie Roenigk, Staff Writer

Four of the five people who died June 3 at the scene of a two-vehicle, head-on collision south of Riverton were intoxicated, and one of those intoxicated individuals was driving at the time of the crash, officials said Thursday.

Elizabeth Ridgley, 67,Sandra Lucero, 54, Derrald Antelope, 54, Kristen SunRhodes, 25, and Whitney SunRhodes, 25, all died in the incident.

All of the deaths were labeled homicides, except for Whitney SunRhodes. Officials said she was driving one of the vehicles involved.

Her passengers were Lucero, Antelope, and Kristen SunRhodes.

Ridgley, who was sober at the time of her death, was in a separate vehicle with three other individuals who were injured in the incident.

Coroner Mark Stratmoen said the three survivors were in stable conditionwhen he was last updated.

Toxicology

None of the five deceased was autopsied, but all underwent toxicology testing.

The results of the tests show Whitney SunRhodes died accidentally of multiple blunt-force injuries from the motor vehicle collision. Her blood-alcohol content was .164 at the time. Wyoming's legal limit for intoxication is .08.

She also tested positive for cannabis use, with 4.5 nanograms per milliliter of delta-9 THC, 14 ng/ml of delta-9 carboxy THC and 1.3 ng/ml of 11-hydroxy delta-9 THC in her system at the time of her death.

Kristen SunRhodes died of a homicide due to blunt-force head and chest trauma from a motor vehicle collision. Her blood-alcohol content was .36.

Sandra Lucero died of a homicide due to multiple blunt-force injuries from a motor vehicle collision. Her blood-alcohol content was .314, and she also had a therapeutic level (5.5 micrograms per milliliter) of Phenobarbital in her system.

Derrald Antelope died of a homicide due to blunt-force head and chest trauma from motor vehicle collision. His blood-alcohol content was .308.

Elizabeth Ridgley died of a homicide due to blunt-force head and chest trauma from motor vehicle collision. She had no relevant toxicology.

None of the deceased was wearing seatbelts, Stratmoen said, noting that airbags deployed in both vehicles.

"But that doesn't help a lot if you aren't wearing seatbelts," he said.

The times of death all were listed as 10:45 p.m. June 3 - about the same time the crash was reported in the 1600 block of 17 Mile Road.

Stratmoen said witnesses saw the collision and were able to notify law enforcement "almost immediately."

The Riverton Volunteer Fire Department responded to extinguish the flames that had ignited in the engine compartment of the one of the vehicles involved.

The Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Federal Bureau of Investigation are the lead law enforcement agencies investigating the incident, with the assistance of the Wyoming Highway Patrol, Stratmoen said.
 

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