The alleged drunken driver who struck and killed a bicyclist Dec. 30 east of Bend had empty beer cans and prescription drugs in her pickup and told police she was on painkillers and muscle relaxers, according to court documents.
Deschutes County Sheriff’s Office Sgt. Kent Vander Kamp described in a search warrant affidavit how 41-year-old Shantel Lynn Witt failed three field sobriety tests and admitted to using hydrocodone and soma, or carisoprodol, a muscle relaxer meant to treat pain or injury.
Witt also admitted to crossing over the centerline before crashing into the bicyclist, Marika J. Stone, a 38-year-old Bend dentist and mother of two. Stone died at the scene.
Vander Kamp wrote that Witt’s face appeared pale and tired, her eyes were constricted, glassy and slow to react to light and her speech was confused, repetitious, slow, talkative and thick-tongued.
He arrested Witt for first-degree manslaughter, driving under the influence of intoxicants and reckless driving.
“Shantel Lynn Witt had poor driving, to wit: driving into opposing lanes and off the roadway into a bicyclist,” Vander Kamp noted. “The bicyclist died at the scene of the crash and as a result of the crash.”
Vander Kamp submitted the affidavit to have Witt’s blood and urine tested and be able to search her truck. Toxicology results have not been returned.
Evidence collected from Witt’s 2002 GMC Sierra truck included three empty cans of Coors beer and pain medications such as hydrocodone, oxycodone, carisoprodol, tramadol hydrochloride and clonazepam, a sedative meant to treat seizures, panic disorder and anxiety.
In addition, investigators found a 9mm pistol between the driver’s seat and the center console and receipts from Sally Beauty and Taco Bell dated less than two hours before the crash, according to the affidavit.
At the scene of the crash, investigators discovered debris, including pieces of the bicyclist’s helmet. Other evidence included drone footage collected by Bend Police.
Witt was driving her truck eastbound on Dodds Road about 3 p.m. when she allegedly failed to negotiate a curve to the right near the Obernolte Road intersection, crossing through the westbound lane and striking one of three westbound bicyclists before leaving the road, according to the sheriff’s office.
Witt was booked in Deschutes County jail the day of the crash and released early the next day when she posted $27,000 of her $270,000 bail, according to the sheriff’s office.
Her first court appearance is scheduled for Tuesday in Deschutes County Circuit Court.
Witt was arrested for drunken driving in August 2014 and pleaded guilty. The criminal charges were dismissed in November 2015 following Witt’s completion of a diversion program, according to court documents.
— Reporter: 541-617-7820, firstname.lastname@example.org