Driver facing felony charge after death of Park City pedestrian

Nicholas Westland. Photo: Summit County

PARK CITY, Utah, Feb. 8, 2020 (Gephardt Daily) — The driver of a ski equipment rental van has been charged after Park City police say he left the scene after hitting a pedestrian who later died.

Driver Nicholas Thorston Westland, 23, faces an initial charge of failure to remain at the scene of an accident involving death, a third-degree felony.

The accident happened at about 7:13 p.m. Thursday at 1482 Empire Ave., according to a probable cause statement.

“The complainant on scene told dispatch the victim was a 42-year-old male … that was not conscious.”

The victim’s wife and a doctor who had arrived at the scene were trying to care for the unconscious victim, whose name has not been released.

The officer told bystanders to leave after he asked for witnesses, the statement says. One man who came forward said he had taken a picture of the van’s license plate, and showed it to the officer.

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While the victim was transported to the University of Utah Hospital in serious condition, another officer contacted the company that owns the van.

The driver, Westland, returned to the scene and was asked if he hit the victim because he did not see the man.

Westland allegedly told police, “No sir he was out in the middle of the road.'”

When asked why he did not stay at the scene, Westland allegedly responded, “Anyone’s first reaction would have been scared shitless,” the probable cause statement said. “Man I just feel so f****** horrible … I just didn’t f****** see him dude.”

After he was read his Miranda Rights, Westland declined further comment, the statement says.

His bail is set at $20,000.

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