Negligent Homicide Charges Filed In I-90 Rollover Deaths
Negligent homicide charges have been filed against 42 year-old James William Bayford for allegedly causing the fatal rollover crash that occurred on Saturday night on Interstate 90 near Bonner.
Bayford is in the Missoula County Jail on $300,000 bond for allegedly grabbing the wheel of the custom-fitted Jeep Wrangler that was transporting customers of the Testy Fest at Rock Creek Lodge, causing the vehicle to roll into the median. Two people, a male and a female, were ejected and were pronounced dead at the scene. Seven others, including Bayford were injured and transported to the hospital.
The vehicle, in use for the first year at the festival, was specially designed to shuttle customers to and from the event specifically to prevent drunk driving accidents.
According to Montana Highway Patrol Trooper Benjamin Panas, the accident occurred just after 8:00 p.m.while the vehicle was westbound towards Missoula at about mile marker 111 between the Bonner and Turah exits.
Panas said that speed was not a factor in the accident, but alcohol was suspected to have been involved.
The accident remains under investigation by the Montana Highway Patrol.