Motorcyclist critically injured in I-70 crash

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By Adrienne Anderson

JEFFERSON COUNTY — An Idaho Springs man was thrown 50 feet Thursday afternoon after losing control of his motorcycle while allegedly racing another motorist on I-70.

Steven P. Smith, 39, was heading west on I-70 near Lookout Mountain when his red 1998 Honda motorcycle crossed two lanes and hit the guardrail. Police said witnesses reported that a black 2004 Porsche was racing with Smith’s motorcycle. Smith was airlifted to St. Anthony Hospital with serious bodily injury and as of Friday afternoon remained in critical condition.

The accident shut down westbound I-70 for several hours as police attempted to reconstruct the accident scene and make room for Flight for Life.

A witness followed the driver of the black Porsche to Summit County and assisted the Colorado State Patrol in locating the suspect. He was stopped in Summit County and taken back to the accident scene for questioning.

Police identified the driver as Ronald Assaff, 43, of Edwards. Assaff was arrested, and felony charges were pending for both Assaff and Smith.

"Driving at high speeds with the congestion of traffic on I-70 at that time of day is extremely dangerous," said Trooper Gilbert Mares. "It's dangerous to the motorists, it's dangerous to themselves and it's against the law."