Prineville man killed, 2 hurt in Hwy. 26 crash near Mitchell

Two passengers flown to Bend hospital

(Update: adding Ledford died at scene)

A 31-year-old Prineville man was killed and two people were injured Saturday morning in a two-vehicle crash on Highway 26 west of Mitchell in Wheeler County, Oregon State Police reported.

Troopers were dispatched around 7:30 a.m. to the reported fatal crash at milepost 55, east of the Ochoco Summit, said Sgt. Yvette Shephard.

A preliminary investigation revealed a black 2013 Dodge Ram pickup, occupied by three people, was heading east on the highway at about 50 mph when the driver, Scotty Ledford of Prineville, veered off the highway and struck a rock wall.

The impact caused the pickup to cross the highway into the oncoming lane, then into a ditch, Shephard said. It was struck by a westbound blue 1995 Dodge pickup driven by Kimberly Banta, a 55-year-old Sweet Home man, the sergeant said.

Ledford died at the crash scene. The two passengers in Ledford’s pickup, Angelica Luna, 27, and a juvenile, were flown by air ambulance to St. Charles Bend with non-life-threatening injuries, Shephard said. Luna was listed in serious condition late Saturday night, according to a house supervisor.

Banta and a passenger in his pickup, Jared Banta, 42, also of Sweet Home, were not injured.

The crash and investigation closed Highway 26 for about two hours, with detours in place, the sergeant said. OSP was assisted at the scene by ODOT, the Wheeler and Crook county sheriff’s offices, and both counties’ fire and rescue agencies.

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