Prineville driver knocked unconscious in crash, passenger not found
Nov 23,2007 00:00 by Cheryl McDermott

A 21-year old Prineville driver was knocked unconscious for more than five hours after his vehicle left the road, crashed through a metal gate, and struck a large boulder.  His passenger, an unidentified 35-to-40-year old hitchhiker, was never located.

According to Deputy Barry Seguin with the Crook County Sheriff’s Office, deputies were dispatched to a report of a single-vehicle crash at SE Davis Loop and David Way about 8:40 a.m. on Thursday, November 22. When deputies arrived, Crook County medical response units were on scene and checking the driver, Jesus Berumen, for injuries.

Berumen was transported by ground ambulance to Pioneer Memorial Hospital, where he was treated for minor injuries.

An investigation determined that the crash had actually occurred hours earlier, about 3 a.m., when Berumen was traveling north and failed to negotiate a curve.  After crashing through the gate and striking the boulder, Berumen’s vehicle landed on its wheels.  Awakening after being knocked unconscious, Berumen walked to a home off of David Way to ask for help.

Berumen told deputies he was on his way home when he picked up a hitchhiker on SE Davis Loop.  The hitchhiker was described as 35-40 years old, 5-feet 8-inches tall, heavy set, clean-shaven with short white hair and a mole on his left cheek. Although in the vehicle when the accident occurred, the man was “not around” when the driver regained consciousness.

A thorough search of the area by deputies turned up no sign of the passenger, Seguin said, and no citations had been issued at the time of the news release.