Everett man charged in crash that killed cyclist

EVERETT — Prosecutors allege that an Everett man was under the influence of alcohol, marijuana, benzodiazepines, anti-depressants and sedatives when he struck and killed a cyclist in November near Silver Lake.

Garth White, 41, was thrown into the air and died on the roadway from head injuries. His brother, also on a bicycle, witnessed the crash. He told police he was nearly hit by Kerry Stark’s pickup before his brother was struck. Stark allegedly drove away from the crash.

Snohomish County deputy prosecutor Toni Montgomery charged Stark on Friday with vehicular homicide.

He allegedly tested at 8.8 nanograms of active THC per milliliter, nearly twice the legal limit for marijuana. Tests also showed multiple prescription drugs in Stark’s blood, including medication for anxiety, depression and sleep disorders. He also had been drinking prior to the crash, according to court papers.

The arresting police officer noted that Stark, 58, smelled of alcohol and his eyes were “droopy and glazed,” Montgomery wrote. He reportedly fell asleep in the back of a patrol car on the way to the hospital after he complained about how uncomfortable he was.

The crash happened in the 12600 block of 19th Avenue SE. Minutes before, at least one person called 911 to report Stark’s erratic driving, court papers said.

Stark was weaving across lanes of traffic, hit a retaining wall and blew a tire after striking a curb. He continued southbound on 19th Avenue SE.

White and his brother were riding against traffic in the bicycle lane near 126th Street SE, court papers said. They were headed back from Fred Meyer. Stark allegedly nearly hit White’s brother first. He told police that he had to jump his bicycle onto the sidewalk to avoid Stark’s truck. He immediately turned around to check on his brother.

He heard a loud noise and saw his brother “flying through the air,” Montgomery wrote. A witness told police it appeared that Stark hit White nearly head on.

A witness told police that Stark didn’t brake or slow down. He drove away as if nothing happened, according to the witness. Another witness followed Stark, who drove south to Fred Meyer. The defendant stayed in his pickup for about 10 minutes and then headed back toward the way he came.

He passed the crash scene and nearly struck an ambulance that was stopped with its emergency lights on, Montgomery wrote. A police officer caught up with Stark around the 11200 block of 19th Avenue SE. There was heavy damage to driver’s side and a flat front passenger tire. The pickup was smoking and the windshield was smashed.

Stark allegedly told the officer that someone hit his truck. He was unable to elaborate. He also couldn’t explain why he was driving on a flat tire.

Stark was taken to the hospital, and police obtained a warrant to have Stark’s blood drawn. That happened some 3 1/2 hours after the crash.

Stark is scheduled to be arraigned next month. He remains out of custody. He lives about 2 1/2 miles from the crash scene, according to court papers.

Diana Hefley: 425-339-3463, hefley@heraldnet.com. Twitter: @dianahefley

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