Horse Killed by Hit and Run Driver in North Bend-Snoqualmie Police Seek Public Assistance

[This article contains details that some might find difficult to read. Be aware of that before reading on.]

Longtime local Wendy Clark has been in the valley her entire life. She grew up in Snoqualmie before moving to North Bend, where she started riding when she was able to sit up.  Says Clark, “my family always has had horses, and I spent tons of time on the back of our ponies riding up on the ridge where all the houses are now.

Just after 7:00 am on Sunday, January 29th, North Bend resident Wendy Clark got what she called ‘the dreaded call.’

Earlier that day at 6 am, North Bend resident Chuck was driving westbound on North Bend Way near Alpine Fitness and North Bend City Hall when he saw three horses run into the cemetery.  

This good Samaritan then tried to block the cemeteries entrance to keep the horses inside, but they hopped the fence and started heading westbound. The horses then crossed the road near Napa and turned back, running eastbound; Chuck was still facing westbound in his car.    

Now in front of them, moving very slowly, still facing west while they headed east, he turned his hazards on and flashed his headlights to signal other drivers that something was going on. 

A driver heading eastbound in a medium-sized black car with only one headlight-described as the size of a Honda Accord or Volkswagen- ran head-on into one of the horses knocking it straight up off the ground.  

The horse was hit so hard that his legs pointed upwards, and he was thrown into the air, landing in the ditch. Chuck and the other driver present were so shaken by the scene that all their attention was concentrated on the horse.

The two drivers assumed the car had stopped, so they focused on helping the injured horse and trying to contain the other loose animals. When the two realized the driver was nowhere around, Chuck searched for car parts to help identify what kind of car it was, but there was nothing.  

Around the same time, Joel, another North Bend Resident, was jogging on that very cold and dark morning.

He heard a loud noise and saw the headlight of the oncoming vehicle go out.[1] He said the car seemed to slow down but decided to keep going because it didn’t stop to assess the situation.

To Joel, the shape of the vehicle’s headlight appeared to look like a Volkswagen. As he approached, he saw the shaking horse in the ditch with a wound on his chest. He went to the horse to pet his face and head to calm it down.

The jogger said he could tell the horse was loved and socialized, considering his willingness to receive comfort from a stranger under this awful circumstance. When other people came on the scene and called for help, the now cold jogger decided to keep running to warm up.

Stacey, driver Chuck’s wife, was there in less than 10 minutes and worked with the policeman to try and find an emergency vet to help the horse and keep the other two from running off. She made a social media post to try to locate the owners.  

She says, “It was a horrible scene; the horse was trying to get up, but his front left leg was terribly injured as well as other areas, but that was the most noticeable, and he had lost a lot of blood. He was calling out to the other horses and trying to get up. He started going into shock and trembling all over.”

The dreaded call wendy got was from her son, Dallas, saying her three horses, including Double Take, had gotten out of the field by pushing through some downed fencing and were now loose on North Bend Way. He and his girlfriend Hanna immediately headed out to deal with the situation.

Says Clark, “I had Double Take for about 20 years; I got him from some folks over in Cle Elum. He was a great trail horse; he’d gone out hunting and packed deer on him etc.; he was in his environment when he was on the trails. He was named when I got him. They named him Double Take because his markings were the same on both sides. So, it’s like taking a double-take. We also called him DT.” 

Double Take was a Paint Quarter Horse with some Arabian in him, and when he ran, his tail would stand up tall. Always a spunky guy with a lot of ‘pep in his step.’ Clark said she rotated pastures with him, but he’d been on NB Way for a few years. 

A bit later, Clark received a second call saying that Double Take had been hit by a car, and even with Hanna’s comfort, it wasn’t good. The family then made the difficult choice to put him down there on the spot; they couldn’t let him suffer. Clark says, “Bless my son’s soul for doing this.” It was not the way Clark envisioned his passing. Doubletake was buried at a beautiful spot in Fall City.  

Clark now says, “My ponies are family. When the officer called and asked what dollar amount my horse would be worth. I would have to say around $1,000 if I were to buy a horse his age. Actually, he is priceless. How do you put a dollar amount on family?’ I’m heartbroken. I’m pissed. It could have been a pedestrian hit. I want them (the driver) to be accountable.”

Captain Brian Lynch of the Snoqualmie Police Department says they have no leads currently. The police have reached out to several body shops to keep an eye out but have not heard back as of February 3rd. The department has the suspect vehicle listed as an unknown model Honda, possibly an Accord.

Says Lynch, “if we were ever able to bring charges against a suspect in this incident, most likely the charges would be RCW 46.52.010 Duty on striking unattended car or other property and possibly RCW 16.52.207 Animal cruelty in the second degree.”

“Whoever struck this horse knew they did so. Their vehicle would have sustained obvious damage from the collision (we cannot say for certain what the damage to the vehicle would have been). We feel very strongly that the driver has told someone about this accident. We are asking for assistance from the public in identifying this person.”

If you have any information related to this incident, please call the Snoqualmie Police Department at 425-888-3333 or email the investigating officer Sgt. Craig Miller at

[1] Witness recollections can vary in stressful situations.

Comments are closed.


  • This is a terrible event. The article states, “Whoever struck this horse knew they did so”. However, the article also states that it was a dark morning, so it’s possible the driver thought he or she had hit a deer and that could be the reason the vehicle didn’t stop. If a vehicle hits a deer and continues on, does the law consider the incident to be a hit-and-run? Hopefully, the driver will read this article, realize that it was a horse and report him/herself to authorities.

    1. I think perhaps it’s because there several other cars there stopped with their headlights on actively warning other drivers that something was going on in the roadway and the horse was a paint (multi-colored) making it pretty obvious it was not a deer. But hopefully the driver will be found, and we can hear from them what happened.

  • The only reason the driver would need to “come forward” would be to collect vehicle repair costs from the negligent horse owner who failed to properly house and secure their roaming traffic hazards. Hopefully the occupants of the vehicle were not injured.

    1. Bill your pretty cold about the situation are you the one who hit the horse? Maybe for country roads city/county can post signs to be aware of horses or other livestock animals that may get loose. Hitting a Horse I can’t believe the car still ran after that, if that horse flew in the air I image the driver was going 40 and up in speed. The owner could be called neglect for not double checking the fencing. Or you could have some human compassion and try to resolve the matter diplomatically , if you’ve ever had a dog, horses are just as smart and become family. I’m just saying a little human kindness and ownership goes a long way! I’m sure the guilt of reading this article is eating at you, the public only knows one side if you don’t step up or get a lawyer to speak on your behalf!

      1. I hope Melissa can update us on the situation. Was the owner of the house cited for poor husbandry practices?

  • I heard that a horse had been killed on NB Way but that’s all. Thank you for writing this story and I hope whoever hit him is identified so they can explain their actions.
    This makes me so sad. RIP Double Take💔

  • Discusted that this has happened . So very sorry for your loss. , hope they are caught. ❤️🙏🏼❤️

  • Living Snoqualmie