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Rainier man dies in alleged a hit-and-run Saturday near Nicolai Mountain

Rainier man dies in alleged a hit-and-run Saturday near Nicolai Mountain

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A Rainier teen is accused of driving through a crowd, killing another Rainier man and wounding two other people early Saturday morning at the Hunt Creek Rock pit east of Nicolai Mountain west of Clatskanie.

Kyle Snook, 17, faces charges of second-degree murder, first-degree manslaughter, five counts of vehicular assault and driving under the influence, according to the Clatsop County Sheriff’s Office.

He is awaiting arraignment in the Cowlitz County Jail.

Snook reportedly drove through a crowd of people gathered at the Hunt Creek Rock Pit near Highway 30, then left the area, according to the sheriff’s office. He hit several people, seriously wounding three people. Rainier resident Robert Betschart, who died as a result of of his injuries, was also struck, according to the press release.

Police believe the gathering started Friday night and lasted through early morning Saturday. The hit and run happened around 4 a.m., according to the release.

The Clatsop County Major Crimes Team is investigating the incident, and the agency believes many people were at the gathering but may have left before the hit-and-run occurred or before policed arrived.

Anyone with more information is asked to call Detective Justin Dersham at 503-325-8635.

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