WHITE CITY, Ore. —
UPDATE: The passenger in a car chase and crash along Highway 62 on Thursday night has died, according to the Jackson County Sheriff's Office (JCSO).
JCSO says that deputies responded to White City around 8:30 p.m. after a reported restraining order violation. When deputies arrived at the indicated area, a citizen flagged them down and reported that a suspicious vehicle (a white Toyota Tundra) had been following them.
When Deputies found the 2013 Toyota Tundra, they attempted to pull the vehicle over. Instead, the driver fled.
Later identified as 49-year-old Christopher Giron of Ashland, the driver sped down Hwy 62 with deputies in pursuit. When Giron tried to turn eastbound onto Highway 140, he botched the turn and veered off the roadway — striking a signal box that controlled the lights for the intersection.
Giron and his passenger, 50-year-old Teddy Geaney of Klamath Falls, came to rest in the truck at the bottom of an embankment.
Both Giron and Geaney were brought to the hospital. Geaney apparently sustained fatal injuries in the crash, and was pronounced dead at the hospital.
JCSO says that Geaney, the passenger, was the suspect in the restraining order violation that had brought deputies to White City. Oregon State Police (OSP) are investigating the crash, assisted by the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) and the Jackson County District Attorney's Office.
According to ODOT, they have managed a "band-aid" fix for the signals at the intersection of Hwy 140 and 62 — however, the fix will cause delays at the intersection until major repairs can be completed on the box. They expect delays to continue for about three weeks.
INITIAL REPORT: Oregon State Police are investigating a crash at the intersection of Highway 140 and 62.
NewsWatch 12 has confirmed that the crash started off as a car chase.
The crash happened around 10:30 p.m. Thursday night.
Officials say the car crashed into a control box. causing traffic signals at the intersection to go out.
Crews with the Oregon Department of Transportation (ODOT) worked into the early morning hours trying to fix the signals.
Around 4:00 Friday morning, ODOT said the signals are operating once again.