Court documents: U-High crash victims took Ponderosa Jump

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by KREM.com

KREM.com

Posted on October 30, 2013 at 3:49 PM

Updated Thursday, Oct 31 at 4:49 PM

SPOKANE COUNTY, Wash.-- Detectives obtained a search warrant to receive the driving school records of Preston Maher, 16. 

Court documents showed the teenager may have been driving to “get air” when his vehicle crashed.  Maher had received his license the day before the deadly wreck according to court documents.

Authorities said Maher was the teenager behind the wheel in a deadly October 5th wreck which killed two University High School students. Authorities said the two girls left a birthday party in a car with Maher.

Witnesses said the group left to take the Ponderosa Jump near Bates and Ponderosa. Court documents described the Ponderosa Jump as a roadway where teenagers drive fast to use it has a jump.


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A teenager told authorities that Maher had previously been in a car that took the Ponderosa Jump at more than 50 miles-per-hour. Documents described Maher's speed as more than 50 miles-an-hour the night of the crash. Investigators estimated he was driving at highway speeds. The speed limit near the intersection is 25 miles-an-hour.


Detectives believe Maher hit a curb, went airborne, and hit a tree on the passenger side. The two girls were sitting in the front and back seat on that side.

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Maher has not been charged. However, court documents showed the wreck is being investigated as vehicular homicide.

The driver was hospitalized following the deadly wreck along Bates Road. He was released from the hospital on October 10th according to authorities.

Authorities said alcohol did not play a role. They said the driver was not impaired, but rather inexperienced.

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