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NEW INFORMATION: Teenage driver of stolen van involved in crash

By: WEAU 13 News Staff Email
By: WEAU 13 News Staff Email

MENOMONIE, Wis. (WEAU) - We have new information on a crash that sent six people to the hospital in Dunn County.

The Dunn County Sheriff's Department now says it was a 14-year-old boy who drove the van in the crash on Highway 25. The van was also reported stolen from Durand.

The van crossed the center line and hit an SUV head on. Deputies say a 15 and 16-year-old were in the van with the boy, along with a 25-year-old man and 24-year-old woman. They were all from Durand.

Deputies say the back seats were taken out and a there was an oven in the back with three of them. They were all taken to the hospital.

The driver of the SUV was treated and released.

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(DUNN COUNTY SHERIFF'S DEPARTMENT NEWS RELEASE)

On Monday, October 15, 2012 at 6:39 p.m. the Dunn County E-9-1-1 Center received a call of a two vehicle crash on STH 25 just south of Menomonie. The Dunn County Sheriff's Office investigated that crash with the assistance of the Wisconsin State Patrol.

On October 16, 2012 I sent out a news release about this crash. I now have gathered more information about that crash and that information is listed below. I have included one correction regarding the drivers age.

I originally reported that the driver of the van was 13 years old. He
actually is 14 years of age and had only turned 14 about 2 weeks before this crash. I still can not provide his name per the assistant district attorney's direction. I however will report that he claimed to have been seat belted in and only received minor injuries. He was transported to Mayo-Menomonie for treatment.

That 14 year old male is from Durand, WI and was driving a 2002 Chrysler van owned by James Montroy of Monmouth, Il. That van was reported stolen to the Pepin County Sheriff's Office or Durand Police Department after the crash.

In the front passenger seat was a 16 year old from Durand, WI who's name will not be released at this time since he is a minor. He also claims to have been seat belted in and only received minor injuries. He was transported to Mayo-Menomonie for treatment.

Three other passengers were in the back of the van and were seated unrestrained on the floor because the rear seats were taken out of the van. In the rear of that van there was an unsecured kitchen stove / oven that may have been thrown about during the collision and movement of the van.

Those three passengers, were injured more seriously, probably by the stove as it moved about in the van.

One of the people in the back of the van was a 15 years old male from Durand, WI. He was transported to Mayo-Menomonie and later flown to Rochester, MN for serious, non-life threatening injuries.

Two of the passengers in the rear of the van were adults. There names are as follows:

• Mitchell Holden, 25 years old, from Durand, WI
• Jenna Melstrom, 24 years old, from Durand, WI

Mitchell was transported to Mayo-Menomonie and Jenna was taken to Luther Hospital and later transferred to Rochester, MN for treatment of serious non-life threatening injuries.

The driver of the other vehicle, Cora Frank, was also wearing her seat belt and her airbags were deployed, and is doing well. According to witnesses, the van was swerving all over the road before crossing the centerline and striking the north bound vehicle head-on.

At this time this crash is still under investigation, and no other
information will be released until the crash report is complete. I can not give more details about the conditions of the occupants because of health privacy laws. I am estimating that the remainder of the
investigation will take another 30 days.

Sheriff Dennis Smith
Dunn County Sheiff's Office
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Dunn County, Wis. (WEAU)-A 13-year-old boy is believed to have been driving a van that caused a two vehicle crash on Monday.

The Dunn County Sheriff's Department says a minivan and SUV were headed in opposite directions on Highway 25, south of Menomonie. Deputies say the van crossed the center line and hit a northbound SUV head on.

There were five people in the van. The passengers were all hurt and were taken to Mayo Medical in Menomonie. At least one of those passengers was taken by helicopter to Eau Claire. Deputies say it's believed that a 13-year-old boy was driving that van.

The driver of the SUV was taken to Mayo Medical by private vehicle. She was treated and released with non-life threatening injuries.

State Patrol was called for assistance to document the crash scene and will work with investigating officers from the Dunn County Sheriff's Department. When the reports are complete, they will consult with the Dunn County District Attorney's Office regarding appropriate charges.

There's no word on the injuries or ages of those in the van.

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(WEAU) - A two vehicle crash shut down a highway and sent multiple people to the hospital in Dunn County.

The Dunn County Sheriff's Department says a minivan and SUV heading opposite directions on Highway 25 south of Menomonie crashed nearly head on. The sheriff says it appears one of the vehicles was driving in the wrong lane. He says 6 people were sent to the hospital, with at least one appearing to suffer serious injuries. He did not know the extent of the injuries at this time.

The highway was expected to be re-opened around 10:30 p.m.


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