Alleged Drunken Driver Who Struck Motorcyclist in November Accused of Vehicular Homicide


A man has been charged in connection with a three-vehicle collision that left a man motorcyclist dead in November.

Prosecutors have charged Jeff Braetan Downing, 53, with vehicular homicide.

Court documents allege Downing drove a vehicle under the influence of liquor and/or drugs and caused injuries to Robert Davies, who died the same day, prosecutors state in court documents.

A probable cause affidavit states that sheriff's deputies responded to a report of a crash at 176th Street East and Canyon Road at 2:47 a.m. on Nov. 8, 2022. The document states that Downing was driving south in a black pickup and struck a motorcyclist riding east at the intersection. Another driver in a white Chrysler hit Downing's truck after the initial collision. The owner of the Chrysler told law enforcement that he and the motorcyclist had a green light.

The motorcyclist, later identified as Davies, was transported to Tacoma General Hospital where he died of his injuries.

Downing told officers on scene that he had consumed alcohol prior to driving, court records show. A deputy stated that Downing had bloodshot eyes and slurred speech.

A deputy received a warrant to test Downing's blood-alcohol level. At 6:14 a.m., Downing's blood-alcohol was 0.09, which is considered legally drunk in the state of Washington.

Downing is scheduled to be arraigned on Tuesday.