Authorities ID victims in Wisconsin Girl Scouts hit-and-run; driver was 'huffing' prior to crash

The driver was allegedly 'huffing' before the crash.
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Mourners attend a vigil at Halmstad Elementary School on Sunday evening.

Mourners attend a vigil at Halmstad Elementary School on Sunday evening.

Authorities in Wisconsin have identified the 3 Girl Scouts and one troop leader killed in a hit-and-run on Saturday, and say the accused driver was "huffing" prior to the crash.

Colton Treu, 21, of Chippewa Falls, is facing up to 13 charges in relation to the Saturday crash in Lake Hallie, which saw a pickup leave the road and crash into a ditch, striking a Girl Scout troop that was picking up trash from the side of the road.

The victims have been identified as:

– Jayna S. Kelly, age 9, of Lake Hallie.

– Autum A. Helgeson, age 10, of Lake Hallie.

– Haylee J. Hickle, age 10, of Lafayette.

– Haylee's mother, Sara Jo Schneider, age 32, of Lafayette.

The four were members of the Nokomis Service Area Girl Scouts, and the children attended Halmstad Elementary School.

Another 10-year-old Girl Scout was taken to a hospital in a critical condition and is said to be stable at this time. Hundreds of people attended a vigil at Halmstad Elementary on Sunday evening to offer support and prayers for bereaved families.

Treu turned himself in on Saturday morning after initially leaving the scene, as did a passenger in his truck.

They told police that just prior to the crash, both had been inhaling chemical vapors, known as "huffing."

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"This is a horrible reminder of our nations epidemic of self-indulging with substance abuse without regard of the consequences," Lake Hallie police chief Cal Smokowicz said on Facebook.

"Words cannot describe our Lake Hallie community’s sorrow for the witnesses, victims, and their families. This senseless crash was completely avoidable."

Treu is being held on 13 charges, including 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.

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