BILLINGS – A Billings man accused of killing a highway road crew member admitted Tuesday to a felony charge of negligent vehicular homicide.
Ethan James Anderson, 28 of Billings, appeared in Yellowstone County District Court for a change of plea hearing. He was charged last year for the death of 52-year-old Jeff Dykeman, a Montana Department of Transportation road worker who was struck by a truck on Oct. 24.
The crash happened at the I-90 off-ramp on South Billings Boulevard at exit 447 at approximately 3:30 p.m.
Anderson also changed his plea to guilty to two counts of criminal endangerment.
Prosecutors said Anderson was driving under the influence of Difluoroethane at the time of the crash and was severely impaired after ingesting or inhaling the substance.
Court documents also say during the execution of a search warrant a can of Dust-Off, a dust cleaner that uses compressed gas, with a top detached was located in Anderson’s truck. The product contains Difluoroethane, a chemical known to cause a high if inhaled.
The maximum penalty for vehicular homicide is 30 years in prison.
Anderson is scheduled to appear in a special sentencing hearing in August before Judge Michael Moses.
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Story by Zoe Zandora – MTN News