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By Brandon Cline

Vehicular homicide case headed to trial


August 9, 2017

Brandon Cline


On Aug. 7, 24-year-old Cody Sallee pleaded not guilty to a Vehicular Homicide charge in the Klickitat County Superior Court. The case will now head to trial.

Sallee was arrested and charged with Vehicular Homicide on July 30, after a four-year-old child died in an ATV accident about nine miles west of Goldendale.

Sallee was allegedly doing “donuts” on an ATV with Robert Perkins—who was holding his own two children in his lap—in the passenger seat when it flipped over. The roll bar, which is supposed to limit the impact in the event of the ATV flipping over, apparently landed on the four-year-old’s head, pinning the child underneath the ATV.

According to court documents, Perkins said he and Sallee got the four-year-old out from under the ATV, but the child was not breathing. Perkins told detectives that he and Sallee jumped into a vehicle and raced into Goldendale, with Perkins starting CPR on his child. After arriving at the Goldendale Fire Department to meet an ambulance, the child was declared dead by medics.

The other child, 2, was checked by medics and transported to Klickitat Valley Hospital.

Deputies say that Sallee admitted to drinking earlier in the day, and had drank some shots of vodka after the accident occurred. Perkins told deputies that he and Sallee had been golfing earlier in the day, and that he had seen Sallee drink “at least” a couple of beers, but was unsure of the total amount, according to court documents.

Klickitat County Prosecuting Attorney David Quesnel charged Sallee with Vehicular Homicide on July 31. In Washington state, Vehicular Homicide is a class A felony with a maximum penalty of life in prison without the possibility of parole, and/or a fine.

This is the second fatal event that the Klickitat County Sheriff’s Office has responded to in the past month. On June 30, law enforcement responded to a man lying dead on a road in Wishram. Michael Matteson, 59, was arrested and pled not guilty to a Second-Degree Murder charge.


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