Tentative Plea Deal For Hit-&-Run Witnessed by Minnesota Trooper
Faribault, MN (KROC-AM News) - A tentative plea agreement has been worked out in the case of a Minnesota man accused of injuring two men in a hit-and-run last year that was witnessed by a State Trooper.
A Petition to Enter Guilty plea has been filed in Rice County Court by 39-year-old Marlon Fleming. It states that the Lakeville man has agreed to a "straight plea," which means he will admit to two counts of criminal vehicular operation without a recommendation or agreement concerning his sentence.
Fleming was arrested last May after the vehicle he was driving struck and injured a pair of tow truck operators who were working to remove a pickup truck and a camper from the median along northbound I-35 in the Northfield area. The two Faribault men, 39-year-old Michael Sirek and 23-year-old Parker Swanson, were taken to a nearby hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.
The criminal complaint against Fleming alleges he then drove away from the scene. The State Trooper who witnessed the incident was parked behind the tow truck with his emergency lights activated and a directional arrow on his squad car illuminated to warn other motorists of the danger.
The charges also stated that investigators were able to identify Fleming as the hit-and-run driver because his father turned him in after Fleming brought the damaged car back to his father's home. In the statement to investigators, the father described Fleming as "drunk and belligerent."
The court document also indicates the trooper who witnessed the car striking the tow truck operators later transported Fleming to a hospital to be checked out because of the level of his impairment. While at the hospital, Fleming told the trooper he was distracted by his phone and that his father had told him "about two guys getting hit on 35W, and I was like no that was not me, and then just kinda thinking about it, I was like, oh my God, that probably was me."
A plea hearing for Fleming has yet to be scheduled. He remains free without bail, but with conditions set by the court.