FAIRFIELD, ID — A Fairfield man has been charged in connection with a traffic accident in Blaine County in which three children were killed.
According to a news release from the Blaine County Sheriff’s Office, about 2:20 a.m. Saturday, deputies were dispatched to a two-vehicle crash on Highway 20 at milepost 173, east of Hot Springs Landing.
The collision occurred at the site of a temporary traffic signal for the Idaho Transportation Department’s bridge construction project south of Bellevue.
Deputies say they found a white 1995 Dodge pickup in the roadway with extensive front-end damage. They identified the driver by Mathew R. Park, 46, from Fairfield.
The second vehicle, a Blue 2000 Dodge Neon, driven by Somchai Ray Lee Lurak, 26, of Mountain Home, had extensive rear-end damage. Investigators identified the Neon’s front passenger as Emma Weigand, 26, also of Mountain Home, and three female children in the rear seats, ages 5, age 3, and 6. All three children were in car seats, according to the release.
Deputies determined Lurak and his passengers were traveling westbound on Highway 20 and were stopped at the construction site. They say Park was also traveling westbound on Highway 20 and collided with the rear of the Dodge Neon in the westbound lane.
Two of the children died at the scene. The 3-year-old later died at a Boise hospital. The Ada County Coroner identified her as Drayka Rayshell. Her cause of death was listed as blunt force trauma.
Lurak was flown by air ambulance to a hospital with serious injuries. The release said he is currently listed in critical condition.
Weigand was transported to St. Luke’s hospital in Ketchum but was later transferred to St. Alphonsus Hospital in Boise.
Investigators said Park appeared uninjured and declined medical assistance.
Deputies reported Park showed signs of intoxication. He was given field sobriety tests and provided breath samples.
Park was booked into the Blaine County Detention Center on two counts of felony aggravated driving under the influence and three counts of felony Vehicular Manslaughter.
The Blaine County Sheriff’s Office and the Idaho State Police are continuing to investigate the crash.