Newburgh sledding fatality results in OWI arrest


NEWBURGH — A Castle High School junior was killed Saturday when her sled went into the path of a vehicle allegedly operated by an impaired driver.


Davis Collier, 16, of Newburgh, was pronounced dead at the scene of the 10:13 p.m. accident on French Island Trail at the Old Lock and Dam area in Newburgh.

Collier was struck by a motor vehicle driven by 20-year-old Galina Witte of Evansville, according to the Newburgh Police Department.

Police said it was reported that Collier had been sledding and was struck when her sled entered the roadway and slid into the path of the oncoming vehicle.

Witte was arrested and preliminarily charged with operating while intoxicated with a prior conviction for the offense and for operating while intoxicated — endangerment.

The Evansville Courier reported Witte was arrested in January of 2017 for operating a vehicle while intoxicated endangering a person. She was 19 years old at the time and pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor charge.

In October, according to the The Evansville Courier, she was sentenced to one year at the Warrick County Security Center suspended to probation.

Newburgh police report the investigation is ongoing and additional charges may be filed. Witte is lodged in the Warrick County Security Center.

Following news of the tragedy, police said officials at Castle High School announced that grief counselors would be available from 2 to 4 p.m. today for students trying to cope with the loss of the teen.

The Newburgh Town Council also reacted, closing French Island Trail to traffic along the riverfront between Westervelt Drive and State Street in Newburgh until further notice.

The Warrick County Sheriff’s Department is assisting in the investigation.

More on