PRINEVILLE, Ore. - A 30-year-old Prineville man has been arraigned on four counts of manslaughter, two counts of criminally negligent homicide and other charges in an October crash on a rural road south of Prineville that killed two of his four passengers, authorities said.
Justin Dewey Bittick remained held on $500,000 bail Friday at the Jefferson County Jail, two days after he surrendered to Crook County sheriff's deputies in the jail's lobby.
Sheriff's Sgt. Brian Bottoms said Bittick turned himself in after his attorney was notified of the grand jury's 14-count indictment, which charges him with two counts each of first-degree and second-degree manslaughter, as well as DUII, third-degree assault, reckless driving and recklessly endangering charges.
Bittick was arraigned on Thursday and is due back in court next Thursday for a status check on the case, court records show. The two other people in the car also were seriously injured, according to the indictment.
Stephen Leader Bowles, 21, of Madras, and Caleb Williams, 23, of Prineville, were killed early Saturday, October 21 when Bittick's 1987 Nissan Maxima left Southwest Reservoir Road about 20 miles southwest of Prinevile and flipped several times, throwing all five occupants to the ground.
Deputies said at the time it appeared the driver had lost control while trying to negotiate a corner. None of the five were believed to have been wearing seat belts, and alcohol and speed were believed to be factors in the crash.