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Hennepin County sheriff charged with DWI in I-94 crash near Alexandria

A urine sample showed Hennepin County Sheriff David Hutchinson had a blood alcohol content of .13, according to the Minnesota Department of Public Safety.

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ALEXANDRIA, Minn. — The Hennepin County sheriff now faces four misdemeanor charges after admitting to drinking before rolling his county-issued SUV in western Minnesota earlier this week, the Minnesota Department of Public Safety announced late Friday, Dec. 10.

David Hutchinson is charged with fourth-degree driving while impaired, carrying a pistol while under the influence and two other charges stemming from a crash early Wednesday morning, Dec. 8, about 5 miles east of Alexandria. Local sheriff's deputies responding to the scene suspected Hutchinson was under the influence.

A urine sample analyzed by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension found Hutchinson had a blood alcohol content of .13%, the public safety department said in a news release announcing Douglas County Attorney Chad Larson's decision to pursue charges. It is illegal to drive with a BAC .08% or higher.

Hutchinson, who was brought to a hospital for non-critical injuries he suffered in the crash, was attending the Minnesota Sheriffs' Association winter conference in Alexandria on Tuesday.

He was elected sheriff of the state's largest county in 2018. Hennepin County Sheriff's Office spokesman Andy Skoogman said command staff and a chief deputy will oversee the agency's operations in Hutchinson's absence.

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In a statement earlier this week, Hutchinson called his decision to drive after drinking alcohol "inexcusable." He said he took full responsibility for his actions and plans to address his personal issues with alcohol.

Alex Derosier covers Minnesota breaking news and state government for Forum News Service.
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