- Associated Press - Saturday, October 11, 2014

HAUSER, Idaho (AP) - A bus carrying paintball players struck and killed a Washington state man inside a zombie attraction at a corn maze in northern Idaho, authorities said Saturday.

Jeremy T. McSpadden Jr., 18, of Spokane Valley, Washington, was a role player in the “Zombie Slayer Paintball Bus” attraction at the Incredible Corn Maze in Hauser on Friday night, the Kootenai County Sheriff’s Office said. Dressed as a zombie, he emerged from his hiding place and ran toward the modified school bus, but he tripped and fell in front of the rear passenger-side tires, witnesses reported.

He was run over and apparently killed instantly. Because of the uneven terrain of the corn maze, the bus frequently rocks, and the occupants did not immediately notice what had happened, investigators said.

“It was not until the bus had traveled away from the victim’s location and the role players began to reset for the next bus to come along that anyone realized something was wrong,” the sheriff’s office said in a news release.

The attraction is new this season, according to the corn maze’s website. For $15, customers ride the bus, which has paintball guns mounted outside the windows, and shoot at the zombies as the vehicle drives through the corn maze.

The bus was going forward, and neither speed nor alcohol was a factor, Sgt. Ward Crawford said.

“The focus of the attraction is the bus creeps forward so the customers have plenty of opportunity to blast away at the zombies,” Crawford said. “This looks like it was just a horrific confluence of events.”

A recording on the corn maze’s information line Saturday morning said, “We are sad to announce that all of the attractions, including the free drive-in movie, will be canceled for the remainder of the weekend.”

A message left seeking further comment was not immediately returned.

Hauser is near the Washington border east of Spokane.

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