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Driver Arrested Following Collision with Hood River County Deputy
08/22/2010
Sergeant Pat Shortt
Oregon State Police - The Dalles
(541) 296-9646

Photograph links valid 30 days - Source: Oregon State Police
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A three vehicle crash on Highway 281 involving a Hood River County Sheriff's Office (HRSO) patrol car led to the arrest by Oregon State Police (OSP) of a 19-year old Odell-area resident for Reckless Driving.
 
On August 21, 2010 at 4:00 p.m. a white 1997 Honda Civic operated by JAIME LACHINO LOPEZ, age 19, from Odell, was northbound on Highway 281 approximately nine miles south of Hood River. A 1997 Ford Crown Victoria police car driven by HRSO Deputy MARK SMITH was driving southbound followed by a 2005 BMW motorcycle operated by ROCCO PISTO, age 50, from Hood River.
 
As the vehicles approached each other, LOPEZ, who had been driving at a high rate of speed, lost control of the Honda Civic and crossed into the southbound lane where it struck Deputy SMITH's patrol car. The HRSO patrol car came to a stop blocking the northbound lane and the following motorcycle was forced to drive off of the west side of the highway and down an embankment to avoid being struck by the Honda Civic.
 
Neither SMITH, age 37, nor LOPEZ was injured, but PISTO received minor injuries not requiring transport to a hospital for treatment. The involved vehicles sustained major damage and were towed from the scene.
 
Investigating OSP troopers arrested LOPEZ for Reckless Driving and transported him to NORCOR in The Dalles where he was lodged.
 
Highway 281 was closed in the area of the crash while the scene was investigated and the roadway cleared. HRSO, ODOT, Odell Fire Department and Hood River Fire Department all assisted with traffic control and scene safety.
 
OSP troopers from The Dalles Area Command office are continuing with the investigation.