Suspect in fatal crash found dead

  • 2020-10-08, 05:00 AM (update 2020-10-08, 10:14 AM)
  • Rachel Dahl and Steve Ranson
Suspect in fatal crash found dead Nevada Highway Patrol investigates the accident that killed 12 year-old Jaiden Barajas

A 52-year-old Fallon man under investigation for allegedly killing a Churchill County Middle School student with his vehicle last month was found dead Tuesday.

Both The Fallon Post and Lahontan Valley News, which have been working together in this case, learned Wednesday of Douglas Charles Tracy’s death after the Churchill County Sheriff’s Office confirmed he died by suicide.

The Nevada Highway Patrol is investigating the Sept. 25 crash because Tracy previously worked in law enforcement for several agencies in Churchill County. On the day of the accident that killed Jaiden Locarnini Barajas, 13, at a bus stop on Rice Road near Carson River Road, the NHP requested a search warrant from Judge Thomas Stockard of the Tenth Judicial District Court in Fallon after Tracy refused to submit to a sobriety test. Stockard approved the request at 12:57 p.m.

According to a copy of the search warrant obtained by the two Fallon media outlets, Tracy exhibited a “driving pattern and refusal of a field sobriety test.” Furthermore, Tracy refused to take a preliminary breath test, horizontal gaze nystagmus test (defined as “involuntary jerking of one's eye when it gazes to the side”), walk and turn test and one leg stand test. The NHP then executed the search warrant to have Banner Churchill Community Hospital draw six evidentiary vials of blood. The blood samples were then taken to Reno.

On the day of the crash, the NHP said a teal GMC pickup was heading westbound, but for some unknown reason, the driver veered into the eastbound lane and then onto the shoulder, where the truck hit Jaiden. The Churchill County School District said Jaiden attended the PM session. The boy’s stepfather, Wayne Quigley, said Jaiden kicked his younger sister out of the way before the truck smashed into him. Another sister had stepped forward to see if the bus was coming. She was unhurt.

Quigley said at a candlelight vigil two days later that Jaiden saved his sisters’ lives.

The NHP and its Major Accident Investigations Team responded to conduct the traffic investigation, and the Churchill County Sheriff’s Office conducted the coroner investigation.

Trooper Hannah DeGoey said Wednesday the crash is still under investigation and a request to expedite toxicology reports has been made, but it could take from two weeks to two months before results are returned.

The family said a GoFundMe page has been set up in Jaiden’s memory. Go to

Update: Mass for Jaiden will be conducted Friday, October 9th at 6 p.m. at Holy Cross Church, 5650 Vista Blvd. in Sparks. Viewing is Saturday the 10th from 9 a.m.-1 p.m. at Walton’s Funeral Home, 2155 Kietzke Lane, Reno, and burial is at 2 p.m. at Our Mother of Sorrows Cemetery, 2700 N. Virginia St., Reno.

A memorial was erected at the corner of Rice and Carson River roads for Jaiden Locarnini Barajas, 13, who was killed when a truck hit him at the bus stop.

Rachel Dahl is editor of The Fallon Post, and Steve Ranson is Editor Emeritus of the Lahontan Valley News.


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Rachel Dahl and Steve Ranson



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Kim Zimmerman
Kim Zimmerman 2020-10-11, 12:17 PM
I can't help but think and wander why anyone would refuse testing at the scene of a tragic accident such as this. Take responsibility for your actions no matter who you are. I will be very surprised if tests come back negative. Even if they do, do the right thing initially to avoid any controversy. The fact that the person worked in law enforcement only emphasizes my point. A young boy lost his life. Now, the person who took that life is dead. An entire community mourns. Such a tragedy. I mean no disrespect to anyone.
Shannon 2020-10-11, 07:12 PM
I’m just heart broken for both sides. Imagine a man who refuses on the side of the road field sobriety tests because he could not physically grasp what had just been done. A man who was vomiting on scene. A man who’s life was just as shattered as those little girls and family. How can anyone take a variety of tests and focus with everything going on around him, physically and emotionally. I am grateful for those who love and support both sides without judgment and speculation. What a different world it would be if everyone was a little kinder, a little more merciful, and a little more patient.
Sharon Cusumano
Sharon Cusumano 2020-10-10, 01:55 AM
So very sad and Tragic for both families . May the families find some kind of peace . I totally agree it shouldn’t take two weeks to process blood but it has been like this for years in Reno . The equipment is very out dated from what I have heard . You would think with all the new growth in Reno the they would be updated by now .
Kenzie Quigley
Kenzie Quigley 2020-10-09, 03:08 PM
I love you so much Jaiden u will be in memory of all of us,you will always be in our hearts.
Jack 2020-10-09, 04:48 AM
Its seems so ridiculous to me,and others how a rush could be put on a case and test so important and still take two weeks to a month. This is not NY city its reno, who ever runs that office ,needs to be fired, hust sayin! Give me a break!!
Willa Mora
Willa Mora 2020-10-09, 03:09 AM
Oh dear, Im crying for the families. Cant help crying more for Jaiden's sisters. ~ Crying before prayers
Sebastian paredes
Sebastian paredes 2020-10-08, 02:37 PM
Did he commit suicide?
Tim Burroughs
Tim Burroughs 2020-10-08, 11:42 AM
Isn’t it odd that it takes 2 weeks to 2 months for a toxicology report but when you get tested on probation it’s an immediate pass/fail?
Stanley B
Stanley B 2020-10-08, 12:54 PM
Not really... If you are on probation, you only need to test positive for one thing to fail. With blood toxicology, they are testing for an exhaustive list of prescriptions and drugs/alcohol to give the insurance company an out, so you can be held personally financially liable for the accident, and to help law enforcement determine your exact level of violation.
Patti Anderson
Patti Anderson 2020-10-08, 11:31 AM
this is tragic all around. Two families impacted forever. I hope peace comes eventually to both families.
Tammie Vassion
Tammie Vassion 2020-10-08, 08:28 AM
I am not surprised of the outcome. This man had to feel horrible about killing this poor little boy and also he was probably scared of what his future was going to be. So very sad 2 lives lost.
Carl Hagen
Carl Hagen 2020-10-08, 06:49 AM
Very sad.
Thank you Rachel and Steve for your professionalism.