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Police eye speed and alcohol in crash probe

Jun 3, 2013 - By Christina George, Staff Writer

Law enforcement authorities are investigating excessive speed and alcohol use as possible contributing factors in last Sunday's fatal rollover roughly 10 miles north of Fort Washakie.

In a news release issued Thursday, Wyoming Highway Patrol Sgt. Stephen Townsend said Stanford Friday, 52, of Fort Washakie, was southbound on U.S. Highway 287 at 3:10 p.m. Sunday, May 26, when he came upon another, slower-moving vehicle traveling in the same direction.

"Friday made an evasive maneuver to the left to avoid colliding into the rear of the second vehicle," Townsend said. "He swerved into and then across the northbound lane of travel, going off the roadway."

Townsend said Friday's 1999 Pontiac Grand Am flipped end-over-end before coming to a rest on its wheels.

During the flip, Friday, who was not wearing a seat belt, was ejected from the car, Townsend said.

Passenger Michelle J. Brown, 36, of St. Stephen's, was wearing a seat belt at the time of the crash.

She was treated for unknown injuries and released from Lander Regional Hospital.

Friday also was transported to Lander Regional Hospital, where he was pronounced dead hours later at 8:15 p.m.

Fremont County Coroner Ed McAuslan said a preliminary investigation indicated that Friday died from trauma due to the crash.

An autopsy was not ordered, but McAuslan is awaiting results from a toxicology screening to determine if alcohol was a contributing factor.

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