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Missouri residents may be interested to learn of an incident that occurred on Aug. 17. Police report being notified of a car accident at approximately 10:30 p.m. on Martin Road in Duluth, Minnesota. An SUV reportedly hit concrete pipes that were left by the side of the road as part of a construction project. Officers were traveling to the scene when they learned that the driver had allegedly left the scene of the accident in a truck.

The owner of the truck stated that he was driving behind the SUV prior to the accident and noticed that the vehicle was weaving and swerving. The truck driver noticed a cloud of dust after driving over a hill. When he saw the SUV turned upside-down, the man stopped to help. He later claims to have seen his truck driving away. The 24-year-old SUV driver now faces two counts of driving while intoxicated and motor vehicle theft.

It is alleged that the man admitted to being drunk when questioned by police. He reportedly stated originally that the truck belonged to a friend but later admitted not knowing the owner. Claiming to have smelled alcohol, an officer gave the man a field sobriety test, which he is said to have not passed. The officer took the man to the police station for a blood alcohol test, which reportedly showed a blood alcohol level of .22 percent. On Aug. 20, the man had his initial appearance in court. A judge set bail at $5,000. Another hearing was scheduled for Sept. 11.

If a person is not informed of his or her Miranda rights before giving a statement, a lawyer may be able to move to suppress the statements. It may also be possible to suppress results from blood tests taken without a warrant.

Source: Duluth News Tribune, "Charges brought in theft of good Samaritan’s vehicle", Tom Olsen, August 21, 2013

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