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Driver leaves scene of midnight crash

Two speeding vehicles. A wet road. And a bit of a midnight mystery.

Minutes before midnight on a rainy Thursday night two vehicles attempted and failed to make a Washington Street curve in Brainerd. The vehicles were traveling east and just rounding the curve by the Franklin Arts Center. They came to grief just before the Kingwood Street intersection and were just feet from dropping off the edge into the hole west of the Northern Pacific Center.

One vehicle slammed into wooden pilings in front of the power pole and rolled, ending up on its roof. A second vehicle struck the light pole, breaking it off a few feet above the base.

A 23-year-old Baxter man was arrested for felony probation violation, careless driving and open bottle.

Officers at the scene suspected the vehicles were racing. They weren’t guessing whether the drivers were exceeding the speed limit.

Officers searched the side streets after getting an initial report someone fled the scene on foot. But an eyewitness reported the Baxter driver was alone in the vehicle. The other driver fled the crash scene.

The Baxter man, who rolled a 2006 Infiniti, was able to walk away from the crash. Officers searched the crash site with flashlights as thin clouds veiled the full moon overhead. Both vehicles left imprints in the wet sand.

Brainerd Police Chief Corky McQuiston said the Baxter man reported he was run off the road by the vehicle. McQuiston noted the vehicle that was able to leave the scene must have sustained visible damage. McQuiston asked anyone with information about the crash to contact the police department at 829-2805.

RENEE RICHARDSON, senior reporter, may be reached at 855-5852 or Follow on Twitter at

Renee Richardson
Richardson is a Pacelli High School graduate from Austin, Minn., who earned an applied science degree from the University of Minnesota, Waseca, with an emphasis in horse management. She worked extensively in the resort industry. She received an associate’s degree from Central Lakes College, where she was editor of the Westbank Journal student newspaper, as well as a summer intern at the Dispatch. She graduated from St. Cloud State University summa cum laude with a bachelor’s degree in mass communications and interned at the St. Cloud Times covering business while attending SCSU. She's been with the Brainerd Dispatch since 1996.
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