A Red Wing woman has been charged with three counts of vehicular homicide in Pierce County Circuit Court as the result of an accident last October that caused the death of a Minnesota man.
Cassandra Cleo Smith, 20, was charged with vehicular homicide by intoxicated use, vehicular homicide by use of controlled substance and negligent operation of a vehicle causing homicide. The first two charges are Class D felonies, while the third is a Class G. She is scheduled to make her first court appearance at 10 a.m. next Monday.
According to the criminal complaint:
The accident happened Oct. 3 on Hwy. 63, near County Road K, in the town of Trimbelle. Witnesses told Pierce County law enforcement a black passenger car was southbound on 63, swerving all over the road and went into the northbound lane where it collided head-on with a motorcycle.
Police went to check on the passenger vehicle, where Smith identified herself. She said she was coming from Red Wing, which didn't match the witness's statement. She later told police she fell asleep, causing the accident. She then denied drinking intoxicants or taking any drugs prior to the accident.
Smith was later transferred to River Falls Area Hospital where a legal blood sample was taken. She told investigators she left her house in Red Wing and was on her way to Ellsworth when she missed her turn and that's why she was headed south on 63. Investigators asked if Smith was using her phone while she was driving. She said the last phone call or text she got was before she left her house, which was later confirmed by a search of her phone records.
For more please read the March 20 print version of the Pierce County Herald.