Woman dead after suspected alcohol-related crash in St. Croix County
TOWNSHIP OF ST. JOSEPH, Wis. (WEAU) - A Houlton woman is dead after suffering injuries from a suspected alcohol-related crash in St. Croix County Thursday early morning.
The incident represents the first traffic fatality recorded by St. Croix County in 2022.
According to a release from the St. Croix County Sheriff’s Office, authorities received a report at 12:16 a.m. on Jan. 13 of a two-vehicle crash with injuries in the 1200 block of Highway 35 in St. Joseph Township.
The Sheriff’s Office says deputies arrived on scene and found a truck operated by 39-year-old Benjamin Blietz of Hudson, Wis., which had been southbound on Highway 35. His truck collided with a minivan operated by 34-year-old Bridget Rose Lipinski Clifton of Houlton, Wis., which had been northbound on Highway 35.
Clifton suffered serious injuries and was taken to Lakeview Hospital in Stillwater where she was pronounced dead.
The Sheriff’s Office says Blietz was not injured and showed signs of impairment during an initial investigation with deputies. Blietz was arrested and is being held in the St. Croix County Jail on suspicion of homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle. The case has been referred to the St. Croix County District Attorney’s Office for consideration of possible charges.
Both of the drivers were said to be wearing their seat belts at the time of the crash.
Assisting the St. Croix County Sheriff’s Office was the North Hudson Police Department, St. Joseph Fire and Rescue, Somerset Fire, Lakeview EMS, and the St. Croix County Highway Department.
The crash remains under investigation.
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