ME says man struck, killed in I-44 hit-and-run last week; Victim identified

Investigators seek info from anyone traveling I-44, 319-320 MM, Wednesday, July 27 from 10:00pm to 11:30pm
KOAM SKYVIEW Ty Parks image from Friday, July 29, 2022. Body of Chelsea, Okla. man discovered by highway workers. Cause of death has determined to be struck by vehicle in hit-and-run.

OTTAWA COUNTY, Okla. — Last week we brought you the story of a body discovered by highway workers along I-44 in NE Okla. Now today more details are revealed that the male was struck and killed by an unknown vehicle.

Thursday, July 28, 2022 at approximately 1:45 pm the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, Quapaw Nation Marshal Service and Ottawa County Sheriff’s Office was dispatched near mile marker 319.8 on I-44 regarding a human body that had been located.


Screenshot of approximate crash location on I-44 near where body of Chelsea, Okla. man was located last week. Near where S620 Road crosses the interstate in Ottawa County, Okla. I-44 319.8 mile marker.

Authorities on scene began investigating the incident and the Oklahoma Medical Examiner’s office (ME) was contacted and responded to the scene. Once the ME was on scene, the individual later identified as Richard Lee Atchley, 53, a Cherokee tribal member from Chelsea, Oklahoma and was pronounced dead at the scene.

| RELATED: Body of man discovered by highway workers on I-44

The cause of death was determined to be from Mr. Atchley being struck by a motor vehicle in the west bound lane of I-44. The motor vehicle that struck Mr. Atchley did not stop or report the incident to the authorities.

Authorities are asking if anyone was traveling on the Will Rogers Turnpike in the area of mile markers 319 – 320 on Wednesday, July 27, 2022 from 10:00pm to 11:30pm and saw an individual on or near the roadway or any motor vehicles that may have been stopped or struck something in the west bound lanes of I-44, please contact the Quapaw Nation Marshal Service at (918) 238-3137.


The investigation is ongoing by the Oklahoma Highway Patrol Investigative Division and the Quapaw Nation Marshal Service. Source: Media Release.

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