SPOKANE VALLEY, Wash. -- Spokane County Sheriff’s deputies forwarded two charges of vehicular homicide to the Spokane County Prosecutor's Office against the driver in a crash that killed two University High School students in October.
Court documents showed Preston Maher, 16, may have been driving to “get air” when his vehicle crashed Oct. 5 along South Bates Road. Maher had received his license the day before the deadly wreck, according to the documents.
McKenzie Mott, 15, and Josie K. Freier, 15, were killed in the crash.
Authorities said the two girls left a birthday party in the car with Maher. According to witnesses, the group left to take the Ponderosa Jump near Bates and Ponderosa. Court documents described the Ponderosa Jump as a roadway teenagers sped up toward to use as a jump off point.
Documents described Maher's speed as more than 50 miles-an-hour the night of the crash. Investigators estimated he was driving at highway speeds. The speed limit near the intersection is 25 miles-per-hour.
Detectives believe Maher hit a curb, went airborne, and hit a tree on the passenger side. The two girls were sitting in the front and back seat on that side.
Maher was hospitalized following the deadly wreck. He was released from the hospital on October 10th, according to authorities.
Investigators said alcohol did not play a role in the crash. They said Maher was not impaired, but rather inexperienced.