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Driver was huffing before Girl Scout hit-and-run

Driver was huffing before Girl Scout hit-and-run

- Authorities say the driver accused in a deadly hit-and-run crash with a Girl Scout troop that was picking up trash on the side of the road near Eau Claire, Wisconsin Saturday was allegedly "huffing" chemicals prior to the crash. The fourth girl was transported to a hospital in critical condition.

The Ford F-150 was traveling northbound when it crossed over a lane of traffic and into the ditch, where it struck the group, Lake Hallie police Sgt. Daniel Sokup said.

Two small groups of Girl Scouts and their adult chaperones wore bright green safety vests Saturday as they walked along both sides of County Highway P, which they had adopted as a community service project.

Investigators said Treu sped away from the scene, but later turned himself in.

Girl Scouts sing as hundreds of community members turn out in the rain Sunday evening, November 4, 2018, for a candlelight vigil at Halmstad Elementary School in Chippewa Falls, Wis.

Hundreds of people gathered together Sunday night at Halmsted Elementary School to remember the three girls, all in fourth grade, and one woman who died.

Police say a pickup truck veered off the road into a ditch and struck them.

There is unspeakable sadness in Chippewa Falls, Wisconsin. According to his social media, Treu has been in a relationship since February 2017.

Pastor Jim Woldhuis says the mother and daughter who died attended Chippewa Valley Bible Church, where he presides. Treu initially fled the scene. He is being held on 13 possible charges: four counts of homicide by negligent operation of a vehicle, four counts of homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle, four counts of hit-and-run involving death and one count hit-and-run involving great bodily harm.

"The Lake Hallie Police Department would like to extend our deepest sympathies to the families involved", Sokup said.

Colten Treu, 21, who is also from Chippewa Falls, later surrendered to police, authorities said. The speed limit changes quickly from a 55-mph to a 35-mph zone.

The Chippewa Falls Police Department expressed its condolences to the victims' families and fellow scouts, describing the events as a "truly horrific incident".

"Our thoughts and prayers go out to the families, friends, fellow students, fellow scouts and everyone else impacted by this", the Chippewa Falls Police Department said. Truly, as a community, this affects every one of us. "We grieve with you", the department posted on Facebook. With grief can come pain and anger for what has happened. "No one should take matters into their own hands".