News of Riverton, Lander and Fremont County, Wyoming, from the Ranger's award winning journalists.
Crowheart woman killed in wreck; children injured
May 18, 2012 - By Christina George, Staff Writer
Officials are investigating a one-vehicle rollover east of Shoshoni early Friday morning that claimed the life of a Crowheart woman and injured three others, including the woman's two young daughters.
Fremont County Coroner Ed McAuslan declined to release the victim's name, pending family notification, but a news release issued by the Wyoming Highway Patrol identified her as Jovan Willow, 24.
McAuslan said the victim, her two children and her brother, identified by the highway patrol as Lehi Aoah, 19, were returning home from a high school graduation in South Dakota when the crash occurred shortly after 4 a.m. Friday.
Fremont County Sheriff's Capt. Ryan Lee said his agency's dispatch center received a 911 call at 4:02 a.m. on Friday concerning a one-vehicle rollover roughly five miles east of Shoshoni on Highway 26/20 near milepost 94.
The sheriff's office dispatched the Fremont County ambulance, firefighters from the Shoshoni and Missouri Valley fire departments and the coroner's office.
McAuslan said the woman was pronounced dead at the scene.
"She died from trauma from the crash," McAuslan said.
According to the highway patrol, Willow was the passenger of a Pontiac Sunfire driven by Aoah, when he drove off the right side of the roadway and into the borrow ditch. Aoah overcorrected, causing the vehicle to overturn.
As the vehicle overturned, Willow and her two daughters, ages 3 and 5, were ejected, the release states. Aoah was not ejected.
"The other three occupants were transported to Riverton Memorial Hospital," McAuslan said.
The highway patrol reported both children were taken by air ambulance to a hospital in Salt Lake City for serious injuries.
"Child restraints were present in the vehicle, however, were not in use nor used properly," the highway patrol release states. "Seat belt usage for the driver and passenger is still under investigation."
McAuslan said there would be no autopsy conducted.
"There is no indication of substance abuse" involved in the crash, he added.
The Wyoming Highway Patrol and the Fremont County Coroner's Office are investigating the fatal collision.