Wyoming news briefs for November 9

Two Cheyenne teens struck by vehicle during street crossing

CHEYENNE — At 7 a.m. Monday, Cheyenne Police officers responded to a vehicle incident involving two juveniles at the intersection of Windmill Road and East Pershing Boulevard.

The preliminary investigation shows the incident occurred when a 13-year-old male and 15-year-old male were attempting to cross Pershing Boulevard at the crosswalk. While crossing, both juveniles were struck by an oncoming GMC Acadia.

The victims both suffered minor injuries and were transported to Cheyenne Regional Medical Center out of an abundance of caution.

The driver of the vehicle remained on scene and was issued a citation for failure to yield.

“The Cheyenne Police Department is extremely concerned about safety on our roads,” Police Chief Mark Francisco said in a news release. “Pick-up and drop-off times are especially dangerous for both students and drivers near school zones.”

To highlight this concern, CPD shared in the release that 238 traffic incidents have occurred in the area of East High School this year. Of those incidents, 50 occurred at the intersection of Windmill Road and East Pershing Boulevard.

“Safety is a shared responsibility; we ask our citizens to help keep everyone safe by slowing down, limiting distractions and being courteous to others on our roadways – especially in school zones,” said Francisco.


Girl lies about car being stolen to avoid getting in trouble

GILLETTE — A 17-year-old girl who lied about a car being stolen ended up getting ticketed for underage drinking and possession of marijuana early Sunday morning.

The Sheriff’s Office received a report shortly after 1 a.m. of a stolen 2013 gold Chevy Equinox in the 6900 block of Daredevil Avenue, said Undersheriff Quentin Reynolds.

The girl had told her guardian that the car had been stolen. The guardian reported the stolen car to the Sheriff’s Office. A short time later, the car was returned, Reynolds said. Deputies determined the car had not been stolen, and that the girl had “misrepresented the facts” to avoid getting in trouble.

The girl had been drinking and got home after her curfew, and she lied about the stolen car as an excuse.

Deputies asked to search the home, and the girl retrieved two containers with small amounts of marijuana, Reynolds said.

The girl was ticketed for minor in consumption of alcohol and possession of a controlled substance.


Two of 399's cubs trapped, radio-collared to beef up monitoring

JACKSON — Federal agencies trapped three of Grizzly 399’s cubs and then outfitted two with tracking collars before releasing all three Saturday to increase monitoring as a way to curb conflicts with people.

While the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service touted the successful collaring of two bears as necessary to keep the five-bear family safe, wildlife watchers saw the operation near Astoria Hot Springs as high risk for the well-being of the bears. 

“The Service recognizes the high level of interest in grizzly bear #399, and we thank all of our partners for coming together to do what we can to ensure both the safety of the public as well as the safety of #399 and her yearlings from growing risks of human-bear conflict,” USFWS Acting Regional Director Matt Hogan said in a news release. “This preventive step will help us mitigate further conflicts to protect grizzly bear #399, her yearlings, and the public.”

The yearling cubs “were released together in the presence of #399” and the fourth cub, which was not trapped, the release said. 

The service described a significant increase in the frequency of the five bears lingering near homes and getting into human sources of food.

Such “unsecured attractants” and surprise encounters set the stage for the most common human-bear conflicts, the service warned.

Although the service released few details of the capture, wildlife watchers reported that Grizzly 399 and one cub ran up the mountainside after three of the cubs were captured, separating the bears for several hours Saturday.

“The reality of what they tried to do yesterday was fraught with real danger,” wildlife photographer Mangelsen said Sunday. “It came so close to splitting up that family forever.”


18-year-old charged in alleged sexual assault following homecoming dance

RIVERTON — An 18-year old Riverton student is accused of forcing himself sexually on a 16- year-old girl after the Riverton High School homecoming dance in October. 

According to court documents, Joshua Tingle, 18, was charged Oct. 8 with third degree sexual assault, which is punishable by up to 15 years in prison maximum. 

Riverton Police Department detective James Donahue investigated the case, along with RPD officer Christian Amos. 

Amos met with a family Oct. 6. The family’s minor daughter said she’d gone to a friend’s house after homecoming and drank alcohol with Tingle.

“At some point,” Amos related, Tingle grabbed her face, “forced open her mouth with his hands, and poured a mixed drink down her throat.”

She pushed him away and stood up, but was feeling dizzy and off-balance, and ended up lying on the floor, court documents note.

The girl also reported that Tingle tried repeatedly to engage her sexually, though she kept passing out. When she woke at 6 a.m., she had bruising on her leg and an injury that was sexual in nature, court documents state. 

Donahue interviewed Tingle at RPD. Tingle said he had been too drunk to recall the incident well. 

His case was bound over to Fremont County District Court for felony-level prosecution on Oct. 28.


Woman arrested after firing shot in public space

CODY — The intended target of Carolyn Wood’s semi-automatic pistol may be up for debate, but one undisputed fact is that it was shot in a public setting in broad daylight, in the backyard of her apartment off 18th Street. 

Wood, 34, is now facing four felonies for aggravated assault and battery, charges carrying a combined 35 years in prison and $35,000 in fines. 

Authorities responded to the apartment at 1702 18th St. on the report of a possible domestic dispute and gunshot fired at 2:36 p.m. Wednesday. Officers surrounded the apartment and Wood was taken into custody without incident.

According to Cody Police Detective Trapp Heydenberk, Wood shot her weapon roughly in the direction of her mother Leah Renaud, but missed her by about 30-60 feet. Wood’s 13-year-old son and grandmother were also nearby when she let off the round.

Circuit Court Judge Bruce Waters set her bond at $25,000 after the state had requested it be set at $50,000. 

“She chose to bring a firearm to a dispute and take a shot at her mother,” Park County Deputy Prosecutor Jack Hatfield said. “I definitely believe she’s a serious public safety hazard.”

According to Renaud, Wood became upset when her sister picked her son up from school because he was sick. The school had been unable to contact Wood.

Wood arrived at Renaud’s house, which is adjacent to Wood’s apartment, and began yelling and berating her mother and sister as they walked outside of the property. The dispute continued to escalate, leading up to the shot that was fired in Renaud’s general direction.