Serving the Big Horn Basin for over 100 years

Wyoming Briefs from Aug. 4 2023

Colorado man arrested after 40-plus mile chase from Gillette to Upton

GILLETTE (WNE) — A 59-year-old Colorado man was arrested early Wednesday morning after leading deputies and Wyoming Highway Patrol on a high speed chase in a stolen truck for more than 40 miles.

Shortly before 2:30 a.m. Wednesday, a deputy was at the intersection of Highway 51 and Fairview Road, just east of Wyodak, when he saw a 2012 Ram pickup, driven by the Colorado man, drive through the stop sign.

The deputy tried to pull the truck over, but the driver accelerated east on Highway 51, said Undersheriff Quentin Reynolds.

Three deputies pursued the truck, which reached speeds of 100 mph. They deployed spike strips on Highway 51 just outside of Moorcroft, eventually deflating three tires on the pickup.

The man then got onto Highway 16, still heading east, at speeds of 40 to 50 mph while driving on three rims, Reynolds said. He was able to drive like this for more than 20 miles, as deputies and troopers pursued him.

Troopers deployed spike strips near Upton to try to get the truck’s last tire but were unsuccessful.

At about three miles east of Upton on Highway 16, a trooper hit the truck and caused it to go into a ditch and roll onto its side at a slow speed, Reynolds said.

The driver and his two passengers, a 25-year-old woman and a 17-year-old girl, were not hurt in the crash.

The pickup had been reported stolen out of Colorado and three fentanyl pills were found in the truck. The man was arrested for possession of fentanyl, possession of stolen property and numerous traffic offenses, Reynolds said.

The woman was arrested for possession of fentanyl. Deputies were unable to contact the girl’s guardian, and she was placed into the custody of the Department of Family Services.

This story was published on August 3, 2023.


Bacteria discovered in Teton County creeks

JACKSON (WNE) — High levels of E. coli bacteria in Fish Creek near Wilson have prompted county health officials to post a warning sign at the Hunt Bridge alerting floaters, waders and swimmers to potential health risks.

Sampling and analysis of surface water in the creek revealed E. coli levels that exceed Wyoming health and safety standards and increase the risk of pathogen-related illness for humans, a Teton County Health Department press release said.

Fish Creek users are advised against swimming or similar water contact activities until testing indicates a reduced risk.

In addition to the caution sign on Fish Creek, water quality awareness signs are posted on Flat Creek in Karns Meadow, Russ Garaman Park, and Rafter J Ranch, areas where the creek is frequently used for recreation.

The signs include steps to minimize pathogen-related illness, such as not swallowing water, rinsing off with clean water after swimming, drying ears thoroughly with a towel after swimming, and washing hands with soap and clean water before preparing or eating food.

E. coli are a group of bacteria found in the environment, foods and intestines of people and animals. Most strains are harmless, but four groups are known to be transmitted via contaminated food or water and can cause illness if swallowed. Symptoms vary for each person but often include gastrointestinal illness, such as stomach cramps and diarrhea.

The presence of E. coli may also indicate elevated risk of the presence of and infection from other gastrointestinal pathogens, according to Teton County public health officials.

This story was published on July 28, 2023.


Sheridan Orthopedic civil suit goes to trial Monday

SHERIDAN (WNE) — Trial begins Monday for a civil suit against Sheridan orthopedic Associates P.C. and Dr. Brian Laman. Filed in 2019, plaintiff Mary Moore alleges Laman declined several times to operate on a fracture in her wrist, leaving her with permanent misalignment and diminished quality of life.

According to court documents, Moore suffered an injury to her left wrist May 21, 2017, due to a fall while gardening and was treated with a splint at Billings Clinic Urgent Care, after which Moore was referred to her primary care provider for follow-up treatment. X-rays revealed two fractures and moderate impaction to Moore’s injured left wrist.

May 22, 2017, Moore visited Sheridan orthopedic to have the injury further evaluated by Laman.

According to the complaint, Laman declined to perform surgery on the fracture and treated Moore with a short-arm cast.

Moore was then denied surgery by Laman again June 7, 2017 and again June 28, 2017, according to court documents.

Following the May 22 visit, court documents allege Moore returned to Billings Clinic for further evaluation as she was experiencing wrist pain, numbness, tingling and swelling. Moore was seen by four different specialists between Oct. 26, 2017 and Aug. 8, 2018, the final appointment of which resulted in the conclusion by Dr. Barry Smith that the non-operative approach to Moore’s treatment had caused misalignment and radiocarpal arthritis, both permanent conditions.

Court documents allege Sheridan Orthopedic and Laman failed to surgically repair the fractures, inform Moore of the potential risks of non-operative treatment, conform to industry standards of care for similar fractures and comply with the Wyoming Medical Practices Act, resulting in lifelong consequences to Moore’s health and well-being.

Fourth Judicial District Court Judge Darci Phillips set a five-day trial for the case to begin Monday, Aug. 8 at 9 a.m.

This story was published on August 3, 2023.