An Austin man alleged to have been the driver of one of two vehicles involved in an accident with several injuries at the intersection of 2nd Avenue and 4th St. SW in Austin Saturday evening, and who also allegedly fled from the scene after the crash is in custody.
Officers with the Austin Police Department were dispatched to the scene of the accident at 8:47 p.m. Saturday evening. Arriving officers observed a silver SUV with extensive front-end damage in the middle of the road on 2nd Avenue SW, plus a red SUV with heavy driver’s side damage up along a garage on the north side of the road. Due to the severity of the accident and the injuries, Chief of Police Dave McKichan stated in an incident report that the Austin Fire Department and Mayo Clinic Ambulance service were also dispatched to the scene, and he added that the Mower County Sheriff’s Office and the Minnesota State Patrol were also called to assist.
Witnesses alerted officers that some individuals had fled from the silver SUV, and Chief McKichan stated that 23-year old Jeffer Lorenzo of Austin was apprehended lying down next to a house in the area shortly thereafter. McKichan stated that Lorenzo admitted being the driver involved in the accident, and he added that the driver of the other vehicle, a 16-year old juvenile male from Austin was unresponsive due to injuries sustained in the crash. He was treated by first responders at the scene, and Chief McKichan stated that he was then turned over to Mayo Clinic Ambulance service personnel. A passenger in the silver SUV was also injured, treated and transported to Mayo Clinic Health Systems of Austin, and McKichan indicated that a third person, who was also believed to have been a passenger in the silver SUV who left the scene prior to officer arrival was found in the area a short time later passed out on a sidewalk due to intoxication. He was also transported to Mayo Clinic Health Systems of Austin.
Lorenzo was also transported to Mayo Clinic Health Systems of Austin to be medically assessed. Chief McKichan reported that a search warrant was obtained, based on evidence that Lorenzo was under the influence in order to secure a sample of his blood for testing. Lorenzo was later transported to the Mower County jail, where he is being held on a charge of criminal vehicular homicide, operating a motor vehicle in a grossly negligent manner pending an initial appearance in Mower County District Court. Chief McKichan stated that the case remains under investigation.