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Man who caused fatal wreck charged with manslaughter, DUII

Suspect used drugs, alcohol before driving Highway 30 en route to rehab


ThomasThe man accused of causing a fatal traffic crash just south of Scappoose on Highway 30 Tuesday, June 18, was arraigned Monday and charged with second-degree manslaughter and driving under the influence of intoxicants, said Chuck Sparks, a Multnomah County chief deputy district attorney.

On Wednesday, June 19, Mark Alan Thomas, 39, admitted to Multnomah County Sheriff's Office Deputy Kevin Odil that he had used a variety of mind-altering substances in the morning leading up to the crash, according to an affidavit of probable cause.

The affidavit stated hospital staff informed officers that Thomas' blood screen came back positive for methamphetamine, cannabis and benzodiazepine. Thomas then admitted to taking a couple of Xanax, two hits from a marijuana pipe, smoking about 1.5 grams of methamphetamine and drinking one 16-ounce beer before entering his vehicle in southeast Portland. Thomas said he was on his way to Astoria to check himself into rehab.

Wayne Harvey McCormick, 65, of Scappoose was killed in the crash after Thomas drove his Mazda SUV across the center paved median of the highway and collided with the side of McCormick’s Buick Century.

Thomas was removed from his vehicle with the assistance of the Jaws of Life and was transported by LifeFlight to Emmanuel Hospital. Thomas is currently under police supervision at Emmanuel Hospital.