Grant County Sheriff Promises Action After Two Deputy Crashes
Grant County Sheriff Joe Kriete says his office will take action after two recent crashes involving deputies.
Kriete says they will use information from investigations to determine if the crashes were preventable and whether policies were violated.
Two Grant County patrol vehicles crashed into each other while en route to a pedestrian fatality last week, while a deputy crashed with another car on Christmas Day.
Kriete posted on social media that their findings will be made public.
He said the Moses Lake Police Department and the Washington State Patrol will decide who was at fault in each of the crashes, not the Sheriff’s Office.
After that, Kriete said their administrative process will determine if the crashes were preventable or non-preventable.
He said findings from their administrative investigation, along with the findings from the other independent investigations would go before a Collison Review Board to determine if any policies were violated.
Kriete said they would share those findings with the public.
The Washington State Patrol reported that at 5:40 p.m. last Thursday, 51-year-old Paulina Alvarez of Soap Lake was crossing SR 17 when she was hit by a southbound 2006 Toyota Avalon, driven by 28-year-old Brandon A. Bastian of Moses Lake. Alvarez was pronounced dead at the scene. Bastian was not injured and does not face charges.
Two Grant County patrol vehicles that were on their way to that incident crashed into each other at the intersection of SR 17 and Northlake Road, about three miles north of the pedestrian fatality. One deputy was taken to Samaritan Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
The other crash occurred on Christmas Day when Deputy Gunnar Hinds hit another vehicle on Stratford Road. Deputy Hinds and two people in the other vehicle received minor injuries.
Separately, Washington State Patrol Trooper Jeremy Weber said they're still looking into pedestrian fatality. "The pedestrian exited an uninvolved vehicle and attempted to cross the state route," said Weber. “This is an ongoing investigation. We don’t know why the female was crossing and went into the highway."
Washington Winter Emergency Car Kit
Gallery Credit: AJ Brewster