Austin teen severely injured after two-vehicle crash involving alleged drunk driver; 1 arrested
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(ABC 6 News) – An Austin teenager was severely injured and three others sustained injures after a two-vehicle crash involving an alleged drunk driver on Saturday night in Austin.
According to the Austin Police Department (APD), on Saturday, July 29 just before 10:00 p.m., officers were dispatched to 2nd Ave. SW and 4th St. SW in response to a motor vehicle crash with several injuries.
Arriving officers observed a silver SUV with heavy front-end damage in the middle of 2nd Ave. SW and a red SUV with heavy driver’s side damage up along a garage on the north side of the road.
Witnesses alerted officers that some people had fled from the silver SUV after the crash.
APD officers apprehended Jeffer Lorenzo, 23, of Austin, laying down next to a house in the area shortly thereafter. Lorenzo would admit to being the driver involved in the crash.
A passenger in the silver SUV was also injured, treated, and transported to Mayo Clinic. A third person, believed to also be a passenger in the silver SUV who left the scene prior to officer arrival, was found in the area a short time later passed out due to intoxication on a sidewalk. He was also taken to Mayo Clinic in Austin, according to APD.
“You see how severe it was and these people got out of their vehicle and ran past this car and if anyone has seen the pictures of it can see how badly it was damaged,” said witness Shirleen Voigt.
The driver of the red SUV was a 16-year-old juvenile male from Austin. He was unresponsive due to his injuries. First responders treated him and then turned over care to Mayo Clinic’s ambulance service where he was transported to the hospital.
“We consider this to be a very severe accident. we know just having been there and treating him before he went into the mayo system. That it’s a life changing accident,” said Austin Police Chief David McKichan.
Lorenzo was taken to Mayo Clinic Health System in Austin to be medically assessed. A search warrant was obtained, based on evidence that Lorenzo was under the influence, in order to secure a sample of his blood for testing. Lorenzo was transported to the Mower County Jail.
According to the Mower County Jail, there are recommended charges of Criminal Vehicular Operation – Bodily Harm. Formal charges will be forthcoming by the Mower County Attorney’s Office as the case is pending review.
The case remains under investigation.
The APD was assisted at the scene by the Austin Fire Department, Mayo Clinic Ambulance, Minnesota State Patrol and Mower County Sheriff’s Office.