Idlewild teen charged with reckless driving for role in fatal crash

LUDINGTON — An Idlewild teen could face up to 15 years in prison for his involvement in a fatal December car accident in Ludington.

Talen Christian Woods, 18, was arraigned on Jan. 19 in Mason County’s 79th District Court on one felony charge of reckless driving causing death. His bond was set at $10,000. Three others were arrested on charges related to the same accident.

Woods and 16-year-old Hunter Parmalee were riding together, with Woods behind the wheel, on Dec. 10, traveling north on Tuttle Road near Hansen Road in Custer, about 12 miles northeast of Ludington.

Undersheriff Thomas Trenner said investigators believe the teens were drag racing with another vehicle, traveling at least 65 to 75 mph, possibly more.

“We believe that the two cars either collided for a brief second or (Woods) lost control of the car,” Trenner said. “They came off a paved road and onto gravel road right before crashing.”

Parmalee was killed in the accident. Woods suffered non-life threatening injuries.

The driver of the other vehicle, 19-year-old Custer resident Jacob Odenkirk, also was charged last week with one count of reckless driving and one count of operating a drag race. Two other suspects were charged with furnishing alcohol to minors. Trenner said all involved were at a party prior to the accident.

Tuttle Road is known for traffic traveling at high rates of speed, Trenner said.

“We’ve had some reports, probably of the same people, racing up and down the road at really fast speeds,” he said. “This is the first time we believe it was drag race.”