Ashland man indicted in connection with fatal accident

Southern Oregon University student Hunter Roberson, 23, died in August after being struck by a vehicle on Tolman Creek Road near the Albertson's grocery store. Image by SOU Sports Information office, photo by Al Case, Ashland Daily Photo
February 11, 2022

SOU student was struck and killed on Ashland street in August

By Bert Etling, Ashland.news

An Ashland man thought to have been driving a vehicle that struck and killed a Southern Oregon University student in August has been indicted on a single felony charge, the Ashland Police Department announced Friday afternoon.

An investigation determined that Elijah Benbow, 22, was driving at about 1 a.m. Sunday, Aug. 15, 2021, when Hunter Roberson, 23, was struck on Tolman Creek Road near Ashland Street, and that Benbow left the scene knowing he had done so, the police release says.

The indictment on a single felony charge of Failing to Perform Duties of a Driver to Injured Persons, a class B Felony, was handed down by a Jackson County Grand Jury on Jan. 27. Oregon records show Benbow has two speeding violations on his record, both in 2017, but no criminal record. Benbow is not in custody. He is scheduled to be arraigned March 3.

The Jackson County Sheriff’s Office and the Medford Police Department assisted Ashland Police Department in the investigation.

Hunter Roberson

The university’s announcement of Roberson’s death in August only said he “passed away unexpectedly on Sunday morning” and that the death was under investigation.

Roberson came to SOU from Vista, California, in 2017, and was expecting to returning for a fifth wrestling season this year while working on a degree in Health and Physical Education.

“We are heartbroken by the news that student-athlete Hunter Roberson passed away early Sunday morning,” SOU Director of Athletics Matt Sayre said at the time. “Our hearts go out to his family, friends, teammates and coaches. Hunter was a senior member of our wrestling team and a positive, energetic presence for our program. SOU and Raider Athletics will miss him dearly and are thankful for the time he spent with us. We urge the Raider community to keep Hunter and his family in your thoughts.”

Email Ashland.news Executive Editor Bert Etling at betling@ashland.news or call him at 541-631-1313.

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Bert Etling

Bert Etling

Bert Etling is the executive editor of Ashland.news. Email him at betling@ashland.news.

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