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Man accused of July 4th double fatal Flathead accident arrested

Mother, daughter killed in head-on crash
Posted at 10:12 AM, Oct 22, 2019
and last updated 2019-10-22 16:25:55-04
FLATHEAD COUNTY — A Minnesota man who is accused of killing a mother and daughter from Kalispell in a July 4, 2019 crash in Flathead County is now behind bars.

Flathead County jail records show Mason David Drake was taken into custody Monday, Oct. 21. Court documents obtained from Flathead County District Court show a warrant for arrest was issued for Drake on Oct. 8.

The accident happened on Montana Highway 35 near Hooper’s Garden Center, northeast of Kalispell, just before 12 p.m. on July 4th.

The Montana Highway reported at that time a Chevy Silverado traveling north driven by a 23-year-old man from Lanesboro, Minnesota crossed over into the southbound lane and hit a Ford Ranger head-on. The two women in the Ford pick-up truck -- Alice Barten and Katie Barten -- died at the scene.

Court documents state that emergency personnel reported an overwhelming odor of an alcoholic beverage emanated from Drake, who was taken to Kalispell Regional Medical Center. The Montana Highway Patrol obtained a blood sample at the hospital which was then sent to the Montana State Crime Lab in Missoula for analysis. Testing at the crime lab indicated that Drake’s blood alcohol content was .136 gm/100mL.

Drake is being charged with two counts of vehicular homicide while under the influence.

MTN News has reached out to the Flathead County Sheriff’s Office to find out why Drake was not taken into custody after the double fatality crash and when he’s expected to make his first court appearance.

This is a developing story.