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Butte man dies in fatal hit-and-run on Dewey Boulevard

Butte Silver Bow Police and Montana Highway Patrol investigate the scene of a fatal hit-and-run involving a 2014 Subaru and a 41-year-old motorcyclist from Butte around 1:50 a.m. on Friday in Butte.

The Butte police department and Butte-Silver Bow County coroner’s office released the name of the victim in the fatal hit and run accident last week in Butte.

Benjamin Harrison, 41, of Butte was the motorcyclist hit and killed on Dewey Boulevard just east of the intersection with Lexington Avenue last Friday morning.

The suspected driver of the 2014 Subaru XV that allegedly hit Harrison, Marcus Sepulveda, 41, of Butte, was located less than 24 hours later at 11:22 p.m. Friday in a tent at a campground near Deer Lodge. He was found dead from an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to Anaconda law enforcement.

“It’s a tragedy for the entire community and just one of those incidents where there’s not a lot of rhyme or reason,” said Butte-Silver Bow Sheriff Ed Lester. “We’re not sure what either person was thinking at the time (of the incident) and we’ll probably never find out.”

But according to Lester, Butte law enforcement is still investigating the fatal traffic accident. Lester said police are working with the Montana Highway Patrol and its total work station technology to create a 3-D reconstruction of the accident scene in an attempt to determine what happened.

Lester said local detectives also looked at surveillance footage from a business in the accident area, but that it didn’t provide much information. All law enforcement could determine with certainty is that both the Subaru and the motorcycle were traveling “faster than expected,” Lester said, but that actual speeds could not be determined from the footage.

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When Butte police and Montana Highway Patrol troopers finish their traffic reports, the findings will be submitted to the county attorney’s office in a case file for review, along with witness statements, Harrison’s toxicology report from the Montana State Crime Lab in Missoula, and any other reports related to the investigation.

At that point, which Lester estimates will be in 4 to 6 weeks, the case will be closed.

“I can’t comment on if these men knew each other, but we have nothing to indicate that they did,” Lester said. “It’s just a tragedy, that’s all there is to it.”

Anaconda Police Chief Tim Barkell said Anaconda law enforcement is not conducting any further investigation, as Sepulveda’s death was determined to be suicide. Barkell also said Sepulveda's body was not sent to the state crime lab. 

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