June 8, 2013
Lieutenant Gregg Hastings
According to Oregon State Police (OSP) Senior Trooper Jason Hansen, on June 8, 2013 at approximately 5:00 a.m., OSP and local emergency responders were notified of a single vehicle crash scene spotted off the highway at the Santiam Junction in Linn County. Upon arrival, emergency responders found an adult male and 5-year old boy with possible serious injuries in a 1994 Ford Explorer sport utility vehicle. After removal from the vehicle, they were taken by ground ambulance to St. Charles Medical Center in Bend for treatment.
Initial investigation indicates on Friday evening, June 7, JEREMY LEE WARD, age 31, from Bandon, left his home with his 5-year old son, TROY WARD, in the Ford Explorer. The child's mother told OSP she contacted Coos County Sheriff's Office because she was concerned for her son's welfare and that the father, JEREMY WARD, had been drinking before leaving in the vehicle.
Hansen estimates that between 3:30 a.m. and 4:30 a.m., the vehicle was eastbound when it traveled off the highway without braking and launched off a gravel berm, flying in the air for about 25 yards before crashing down an embankment onto lava rocks. Neither occupant is believed to have been using safety restraints. The crash scene was spotted by a passing motorist.
JEREMY WARD was cited by OSP to appear in Linn County Circuit Court on the following charges:
* Reckless Driving
* Recklessly Endangering Another Person
* Assault in the Third Degree
* Driving While Suspended
* Driving Uninsured
* Failure to Seat Belt a Child Passenger
OSP was assisted at the scene by Black Butte Police Department, Sisters -Camp Sherman Fire District, and Black Butte Fire Department.