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State DWI crackdown nabs driver who fled at 128 mph with 14-year-old along

September 13, 2018 GMT

An unlicensed drunken motorist fleeing police at a speedometer-busting pace with a 14-year-old along in the dead of night was among nearly 1,400 impaired drivers caught behind the wheel during the latest crackdown by hundreds of agencies across Minnesota.

That hot-pursuit incident was one of several stops the state Department of Public Safety (DPS) highlighted Wednesday as among the most troubling during the campaign against impaired driving that ran from Aug. 17 through Sept. 2.

The agency said 11 motorists who were pulled over were found to have a blood alcohol content of 0.30 percent or higher. One driver in Anoka County topped out at 0.36 percent, more than four times the legal driving limit of 0.08 percent.

That eye-popping degree of drunkenness occurred in Andover on Aug. 28, when 43-year-old Deanna L. Hlavinka showed up drunk about 7:20 p.m. at a pizza shop on Crosstown Boulevard, according to charges filed Anoka County. She hit a pickup truck while trying to get away in her SUV, but that driver jumped out and grabbed her keys from the ignition, the charges continued.

Hlavinka told authorities she had been drinking at a bar down the street, said Sheriffs Lt. Dan Douglas.

If found guilty, this would be Hlavinkas third conviction in Minnesota for drunken driving in the past 10 years.

Over in Osakis

Two noteworthy stops were logged in the small central Minnesota town of Osakis (population 1,700) during the two-week crackdown.

An unlicensed motorist fled police at more than 125 miles per hour with a youngster in the car at 2:50 a.m. on Aug. 19 before an officer caught up to him, according to charges.

The officer saw a car driven by Pedro E. Reyes Cartagena stop at an intersection where there was no stop sign, then speed off onto eastbound Hwy. 27, maintaining a speed of 128 mph.

The 32-year-old motorist did eventually stop, and a preliminary breath test measured his blood alcohol content at 0.12 percent. A 14-year-old boy was in the car. The DPS says Reyes Cartagena has never had a drivers license in Minnesota.

The same police department 10 days later nabbed an Alexandria man after he drove with a blood alcohol content of 0.30 percent, according to charges. Chad J. Burkey, 41, was sitting in his SUV parked outside someone elses home about 10:35 p.m. He seemed intoxicated, and the police officer spotted an open container of alcohol in the console, and a set of keys near the booze.

Defense attorneys in the Osakis cases declined to comment Thursday about the charges. A message was left with the attorney for the driver in the Andover case.

By the numbers

The impairment crackdown was a joint effort by more than 300 agencies, which snagged 1,369 motorists for driving under the influence, one less than the last years campaign over the same time period, the DPS said.

The State Patrol rang up 133 impairment stops in the Twin Cities area, followed by police in St. Paul (64) and Fridley (30).

As a crackdown bonus this year, there were 1,244 citations handed out for seat belt violations across the state.

The enhanced enforcement efforts were coordinated through the DPS with officers overtime paid with federal money received from the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration.

Paul Walsh 612-673-4482