NewsCrime and Courts


Details released in fatal Butte hit and run

hit and run memorial .jpg
Posted at 3:38 PM, Aug 22, 2023
and last updated 2023-08-22 17:41:39-04

BUTTE - Court documents allege the young woman charged in a fatal hit and run on July 3, 2023, was reportedly seen drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana before the deadly incident.

Twenty-year-old Butte woman Shania O’Brian was charged with vehicular homicide while under the influence, or in the alternative negligent homicide in connection with the death of Austin Nieves.

She’s accused of hitting Austin and his brother with her Jeep while they were lighting fireworks in the middle of West Granite Street at about 11 p.m. in the evening.

O’Brien is accused of leaving the scene without stopping after allegedly hitting the brothers.

She’s also charged with felony counts of failure to render aid in an accident involving death and criminal endangerment.

The affidavit alleges after hitting the men, O’Brien continued to drive West and parked her Jeep near the World Museum of Mining and she and her two passengers ran from the area.

She and her passengers were later picked up by O’Brien’s father.

Court documents claim O’Brien turned herself over to police the next day, accompanied by her father and an attorney.

Documents also allege O’Brien was seen drinking alcohol and smoking marijuana earlier that day at a concert at the Original Mine Yard and at a house party on Granite Street before the deadly hit and run.

O’Brien is free on bond and is expected to be arraigned on the felony charges in Butte District Court on Aug. 24.