Vehicular homicide trial vacated as of now

SUBLETTE COUNTY – Jay E. Van Wagoner, of Casper, is scheduled to go to trial in 9th District Court next month based on four felony cocaine charges.

He allegedly sold 2 ounces and then 4 ounces of cocaine in April and May to a confidential informant in Sublette County in recorded buys, according to an affidavit. He was charged two counts for delivery of cocaine and two for its illegal possession, court records show.

Van Wagoner pleaded not guilty in 9th District Court on June 17 and was released on signature for a $90,000 cash bond.

His pretrial videoconference is set for Oct. 25 at 11 a.m. with one hour set aside. Thirty minutes are set aside to address the state’s motion for production of witness statements.

The jury trial is set to begin Nov. 15 at 8:30 a.m., with five trial days set aside. At this time, it appears the trial will take place with current COVID-19 operating plan as outlined by the Wyoming Supreme Court.

If or when

If this case is settled with a plea agreement first, though, the county’s second vehicular homicide case was also prepared for the Nov. 15 trial date – that of Alex W. Smith.

Smith was charged with the July 14, 2020, death of a Colorado man after his Ford F150 truck crossed Highway 191 near the Hoback Rim and collided with a Mustang driven by Gerald Fagerhaug of Colorado.

A seriously injured Smith was life-flighted and Fagerhaug was killed in the collision.

Smith faces the charge of aggravated vehicular homicide, alcohol. Smith was arrested in late April and brought to Sublette County, where he pleaded not guilty and requested a jury trial.

His first trial date on Sept. 20 was set aside while Judge Marv Tyler worked through an evidence motion. Smith was the second person scheduled for the Nov. 15 trial date, which Judge Tyler vacated as Van Wagoner’s case appears ready to go on to trial that day.

If Van Wagoner’s trial does not take place, Judge Tyler ruled that Smith’s trial will not take its place, due to serious public health concerns with COVID-19 continuing to run through Wyoming and Sublette County.