Red Lake Nation News - Babaamaajimowinan (Telling of news in different places)

Man pleads guilty to hitting woman with vehicle in 2010


BEMIDJI – A Red Lake man has pleaded guilty to felony criminal vehicle operation for his role in severely injuring a pedestrian on the side of Highway 89 in 2010.

James Robert Brown, 27, of Red Lake, pleaded guilty on Tuesday before Beltrami County District Judge Paul Benshoof.

Sentencing has been set for July 2 before Judge Shari Schluchter.

Brown is accused of making a U-turn along state Highway 89 at about 11:20 p.m. March 5, 2010, and subsequently striking a female who was on the side of the road.

The victim, Sonja Lussier of Red Lake, then 24, suffered massive head injuries and was taken to North Country Regional Hospital and sent immediately to North Memorial Medical Center.

Brown has stated, according to court documents, that he and the victim had been consuming shots at Dale’s Bar & Grill and left the establishment together heading toward the Red Lake Reservation. At one point, he said, the victim got out of the vehicle to go to the bathroom.

Brown has stated that he does not recall striking the victim after he made the U-turn, according to court documents.

A blood test taken after the crash determined Brown’s blood-alcohol content to be .20 percent, according to the criminal complaint.


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