News of Riverton, Lander and Fremont County, Wyoming, from the Ranger's award winning journalists.
Jul 2, 2013 - The Associated Press
New charges in fatal wreck
CHEYENNE -- Charges against a Colorado man accused in a crash that killed a woman in Cheyenne last year have been refiled.
Jason C. Durkee, of Livermore, Colo., is accused of running a red light and hitting the vehicle of Linda Gookin, who died of her injuries. Durkee allegedly told police he didn't notice the red light because of a "sneezing fit," but court documents say Durkee tested positive for methamphetamine.
Ater Durkee's attorney last month claimed a violation of Durkee's right to a speedy trial, a judge dismissed the case but allowed prosecutors to refile charges.
Durkee is facing charges including aggravated homicide by vehicle. A preliminary hearing is set for July 2.
Pilot survives plane crash
JACKSON -- Authorities say an experimental airplane crash-landed in a field southeast of Jackson, but the pilot escaped uninjured.
Dispatchers received a call just before 3:30 p.m. Friday from someone who witnessed the crash of the small plane.
The pilot, 80-year-old Charles Peet of Jackson, says he was taking off from a grass strip at his ranch, the Grumpy Moose. After reaching an altitude of about 100 feet, the left wing of the Zenith 701 lost lift and stalled. The left wing hit the ground first and the plane cartwheeled, landing nose down.
Peet was not hurt in the crash, but he cut his arm on broken glass as he was climbing out of the aircraft. He says "fortunately, I'm not dead."
Troopers push child safety
CHEYENNE -- State troopers from both the Wyoming Highway Patrol and the Utah Highway Patrol recently worked together to check children's safety seats and replaced some of them.
Troopers from both states worked together with the Safe Kids Uinta County group recently to check child safety seats in Evanston.
Troopers inspected 68 child car seats and replaced 14 of them free were found to be either damaged, out of date or whose history wasn't known.
The troopers provided instruction to parents and guardians on how to properly install their new child safety seats into their vehicles.
Church janitor fooled girls
A 29-year-old former janitor has acknowledged leading multiple young girls to believe he was a youth group leader at a Casper church and then taking advantage of that trust.
James David Jaure pleaded guilty to one count of third-degree sexual abuse of a minor and two counts of second-degree sexual abuse of a minor. The charges carry up to 15 and 20 years in prison, respectively
Jaure, a registered sex offender, was accused of sexually abusing three girls -- ages 11, 12 and 15 -- from a Highland Park Church youth group over several months last year. The girls told investigators he asked them to text sexual photos to him and he would text some in return.
Jaure was a janitor at the church. His sentences will run concurrently.