Hennepin County Sheriff Dave Hutchinson will pay $47,711.69 to cover the cost of the damaged county-issued SUV. The sheriff crashed the vehicle near Alexandria going 120 mph while intoxicated. Hutchinson, who has been facing mounting criticism and calls to step down since the crash, announced he won’t be seeking re-election.
A statement was released by Minnesota State Patrol Colonel Matt Langer said, “At the crash scene, Mr. Hutchinson claimed he was not the driver. The focus of the multi-faceted and collaborative investigation, which included the executed search warrants, set out to determine who was behind the wheel. That need dissolved with the admission by Mr. Hutchinson that he was driving while impaired… There is no minimizing or defending the driving conduct and decisions involved in this situation. Mr. Hutchinson’s decision to drive impaired, at speeds in excess of 120 mph while not wearing a seat belt are the exact opposite of what we know helps to keep people safe on our roads. We are glad the injuries he sustained were not more severe and that no one else was injured.”
As part of a plea agreement, he was sentenced to a stayed jail sentence and requirements to undergo an alcohol assessment. Hutchinson also said he was going through outpatient treatment for alcohol.