KENDALL - A driver who struck and killed a bicyclist near Kendall won't be charged with a crime until detectives can piece together a complete narrative of the crash.
Debra G. Peterson, 57, of Maple Falls, was released from jail Monday evening, Jan. 28. Prosecutors said no charges were filed - for the time being - at the request of the Washington State Patrol.
"We're not saying we're not charging her," said Trooper Mark Francis. "We just can't charge her yet because we haven't finished the investigation."
So far, detectives have established a few basic facts: Peterson drove a bronze '94 Ford Escort north at 8:10 p.m. Saturday on a dark stretch of Kendall Road. The car crashed into bicyclists Steven Edmond Waterman, 36, and Daniel G. McKay, 51.
Waterman, who lived a short distance away, died at the scene from head injuries, according to Whatcom County Medical Examiner Gary Goldfogel. McKay, of Van Zandt, had minor injuries. Neither cyclist wore a helmet, nor did they have required lighting on their bikes.
After checking on them, Peterson drove home - possibly to call 911 from a landline phone, because cell service in the area is spotty, according to the state patrol. Troopers had trouble finding her. Eventually, a man drove her back to the scene.
At the time, Francis said the cyclists were in the center of the two-lane road. But on Thursday, he said deeper investigation is needed to determine what direction they were headed and how they were struck.
Toxicology test results also may have some bearing on the charges. Troopers suspect Peterson may have been driving under the influence of drugs or alcohol.
A memorial service for Waterman is scheduled for 1 p.m. Saturday at North County Christ the King Church, 8794 Kendall Road.
Correction: The address of the church was corrected Friday afternoon, Feb. 1.