An 18-year-old Graham man was killed and two 17-year-olds were hurt early Thursday after the car they were riding in rolled, landing inches from a home along state Route 161.
Washington State Patrol troopers arrested the driver from Orting on suspicion of vehicular homicide. The teen was critically injured, but he is expected to survive. The back-seat passenger suffered minor injuries.
Speed is believed to be the cause of the crash; troopers said drugs and alcohol do not appear to be involved.
The driver told troopers he was traveling up to 80 miles per hour when he lost control of his 2005 Dodge Neon while heading north on state Route 161 about midnight. The car rolled and landed next to a home at the corner of state Route 161 and 238th Street East.
Zachary Statezni, who was not wearing a seat belt, was thrown from the vehicle. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
All three people in the car were students at Graham-Kapowsin High School, KIRO-TV reported.
“This did not have to happen. These types of collisions are totally preventable,” trooper Guy Gill said. The driver “is going to have to deal with this for the rest of his life.”
Lori Jeffries lives in the home where the car landed and said the noise woke her seconds before it slid to a stop outside her window.
“I kind of feel sick,” she told KIRO-TV. “My mind’s racing a million miles an hour. My body’s shaking. I just can’t believe it’s even happening. I’m more upset that somebody had to die in my yard over it.”
Stacia Glenn: 253-597-8653