Carson man arrested in hit and run death

A Carson City man was arrested Friday in a pedestrian hit-and-run accident that killed a man early Tuesday morning.

Nevada Highway Patrol investigators were led to Dana Jon Lease, 40, by an anonymous tip Thursday evening. A review of Lease's 1986 Bronco II and a written confession implicated Lease, said Nevada Highway Patrol Trooper Mark Zacha.

"We got a warrant to search the car and shipped it to forensics in Washoe County," he said. "Eventually, we got a full confession as well as a statement from the passenger."

Lease is charged with felony hit and run causing death and misdemeanor failure to stop and render aide. He is being held on $100,000 bail.

Zacha said Lease was driving west on Highway 50 East near Airport Road at 2:20 a.m. on his way back from picking a friend up at work. The car reportedly hit 45-year-old Jesse Wade Knight, who is believed to have been lying in the roadway - possibly intoxicated - near the K-Bar.

According to statements made to investigators, Lease thought he hit a tire, while the passenger suspected that a person had been hit. When they returned to investigate, they reportedly saw the body and fled.

"I think he was actually glad to have it done," Zacha said. "He got pretty emotional."

Lease works as a framer for a local contractor. He was arrested at his home in the 1900 block of Long Street.

Investigators had first suspected that Knight was killed by a semi-trailer, possibly driven by someone who did not see the accident. They said Knight smelled of alcohol when his body was discovered.

Knight was killed instantly by the impact of the crash, according to the coroner's report.

A friend of Knight's told investigators she dropped him off at 1 a.m. at the 7-Eleven. He was supposed to walk to his home located nearby on Highway 50 East. A witness said she saw a man matching Knight's description walking in the roadway before the accident.

Knight's aunt, Mary Sackett, said Knight "was a good kid who was close with his sister, Kathy, and his brother, Stormey."

Knight is one of eight children. According to friends of Knight, he suffered from stomach cancer.


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