A 51-year-old man from Cedar City, Utah, apparently committed suicide with a self-inflicted .22 gunshot to the head after wrecking his Nissan Frontier pickup on a dirt road that parallels SR 319 on the Panaca Summit.
Sheriff Kerry Lee said motorists driving on the main highway around 6 p.m. the evening of Oct. 5, spotted a car on the parallel road near the summit, close to the Nevada-Utah state line, about 15 miles east of Panaca.
Lee said the dirt road is actually the old highway that used to go to Cedar City, and now parallels the main highway for a distance, then comes back out into Utah.
He said upon investigation, the motorists found the vehicle had been wrecked in a five- to six-foot deep wash.
The unidentified man, said Lee, appears to have been driving too fast, came around a corner, lost control, overcorrected, and went over the embankment into the wash. The pickup did not roll over, but was damaged on the left side, and unable to climb out of the wash.
“We do believe alcohol was involved, but don’t know why he committed suicide.” Deputies thought the accident had not happened very long before it was discovered.
The body was taken to the Clark County Coroner’s office for possible identification and notification of family members.