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Lander man dead in crash; alcohol a factor

Jan 31, 2012 - By Christina George Staff Writer

Authorities say alcohol was involved in the rollover that killed a Lander man Saturday near Strokers motorcycle shop in Lander.

"Alcohol is a factor," said Lander interim police chief Jim Carey, declining to comment further on specifics about the evidence.

Fremont County Coroner Ed McAuslan said Spencer Kelii, 21, of Lander, was pronounced dead at about 9:30 a.m. Sunday at Wyoming Medical Center in Casper where he was transported after rolling his truck Saturday night.

McAuslan said the cause of death was determined to be head trauma sustained in the wreck.

"It was a violent crash," Carey said.

According to law enforcement reports, Lander police responded to the intersection of Valley View Drive and Highway 789 for a one-vehicle rollover at 6:44 p.m. Saturday.

"It appears (Kelii) was southbound on Highway 789 coming into Lander when for an unknown reason he lost control of his vehicle," Carey said.

Kelii was ejected from the white 2006 Dodge pickup truck, which came to rest between Strokers and Fremont Therapy Group after rolling an undetermined number of times.

Carey said Kelii's vehicle struck landscaping boulders in the front lawn of Strokers before rolling into the open area between the bike shop and therapy office.

"There was no seatbelt used," Carey said, who was the sole occupant of the vehicle.

Kelii received medical attention at the scene before ambulance staff transported him to Lander Regional Hospital and later to Casper.

Lander Volunteer Fire Department administrator Nick Hudson said firefighters responded to the scene and assisted with patient care and combing the area for possible passengers.

"We stayed there until the vehicle was rolled back onto the wheels to make sure no one else was inside and needed extrication," Hudson said.

At this time, Carey said the fatal rollover remains under investigation by the Lander Police Department with assistance from the Wyoming Highway Patrol.

"We have not yet come to a determination of speed," he added.

Carey said the road conditions were clear and dry Saturday night.

There is no autopsy planned, but McAuslan said toxicology tests would be conducted.

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