Wednesday, December 2, 2020
Dec. 2, 2020

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Fatal crash in Lewis County hospitalizes La Center man

By , Columbian Breaking News Reporter

A fatal two-vehicle crash early Monday on U.S. Highway 12 in Lewis County injured a driver from La Center.

A Washington State Patrol crash memo says that Ray Gleason, 43, of Olympia, was traveling west on the highway at Milepost 92 in a Toyota Prius. He left the road to the right and struck a guardrail, and then went back across his lane and crossed the centerline.

Gleason entered the lane of opposing traffic and collided head-on with a Nissan SUV driven by Tyler Collins, 25, of La Center, troopers said.

Collins was injured and taken to an Arbor Health hospital in Morton. His passenger, 20-year-old Castle Rock resident James R. Smith, was declared dead at the scene of the crash.

Gleason was injured and taken to Tacoma General Hospital, troopers said.

Drugs or alcohol are not believed to be involved in the crash. Troopers cited reckless driving as the cause.