A Baker City man is in custody on charges stemming from the crash in May that killed Leta L. Currey, 46, of Pendleton, Oregon State Police reported Saturday.

Derrick A. Coates, 24, is in the Baker County Jail on a felony warrant charging second-degree manslaughter and third-degree assault after a Baker County grand jury indicted him Friday. State police reported Baker County sheriff's deputies caught Coates around midnight Saturday after they responded to a complaint call.

Coates was driving a 1994 Nissan pickup May 28 when he crashed into Currey and fellow motorcyclist Joanna Mohrland, 53, of Walla Walla on Highway 7 near milepost 40, according to state police. They were the second and third riders in a group of four on separate motorcycles. Their husbands were the other riders.

Currey died at the scene, and Mohrland suffered critical injuries. The statement from state police said she is continuing to recover from her injuries.

Currey was an avid motorcyclist and started the Northwest Iron Maiden women’s motorcycle rider club. She is survived by her husband James Currey, a police officer for the Confederated Tribes of the Umatilla Indian Reservation, and her five children: Dana Apling of Portland, Stephen Devoe of Pendleton, Isaac Bolduc of Portland, Rainer Bolduc of Yucca Valley, Calif., and India Hardy of La Grande.


Contact Phil Wright at pwright@eastoregonian.com or 541-966-0833.

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