EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU)-- The suspect in a deadly hit-and-run crash reportedly told investigators that he didn't report the crash or stop at the scene because he was afraid that he'd be ticketed for drunk driving.
Prosecutors filed criminal charges against Gregory Price, 65, of Elk Mound on Wednesday. They include Homicide by Intoxicated Use of a Vehicle. Price is accused of hitting and killing Joseph Miller, 74, of Eau Claire on Monday. Miller was plowing snow on an ATV at the time of the crash. He died at the hospital. Witnesses say Price got out of the van he was driving, looked over the damage, then took off.
A criminal complaint says Price told a deputy he was "over the limit and drunk" when he stopped Price after the crash on Monday. Investigators found the van Price was driving had heavy damage, and the fender of an ATV stuck between the hood and a corner panel. The deputy reported that there was a strong smell of alcohol coming from the van. He went on to say that Price's eyes were glassy and bloodshot, and that he almost fell forward several times once he was out of the van. Price also told investigators he was headed home, and thought he had hit a car. He told officers several times that he was drunk. One officer found a cooler near the front passenger floor area with a plastic cup with ice inside. It reportedly smelled of alcohol and "the ice appeared very fresh."
Price first told investigators that he thought he had about five or six beers at the VFW on W. Folsom Street, but later said that he drank "six whiskey sevens." An officer performed multiple sobriety tests, but eventually determined it was unsafe to continue. Price's preliminary breath test showed a blood alcohol content of .198 percent, which is more than twice the legal limit for driving.
During an interview at the police department, Price told officers "I was driving drunk. I drink every day." He went on to say that he didn't think anyone got hurt, but that he didn't know because he left the scene. He told police he was in an accident at Kane Road and State Highway 312. He also said he was not going very fast, the roads were slippery, and that it was probably his fault.
The complaint also shows that Price has three previous drunk driving convictions. The most recent is in Chippewa County in January 1995. He's due back in court on March 11.
EAU CLAIRE, Wis. (WEAU) -- A man arrested in a deadly hit-and-run in Eau Claire appeared in court Wednesday. A judge set bond at $20,000 cash for 65-year-old Gregory Price.
Police say Price was driving a van on W. Folsom Street Monday afternoon when he hit and killed 74-year-old Joseph Miller of Eau Claire.
Miller was plowing snow on an ATV at the time of the crash. Witnesses say Price got out, inspected the damaged van, then took off.
Price is scheduled to be back in court March 11th.