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Woodin gets jail, fine, probation, host of conditions

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news Willmar, 56201
Willmar Minnesota 2208 Trott Ave. SW / P.O. Box 839 56201

BENSON -- Calvin Lee Woodin, 23, of Benson, was sentenced Monday to 243 days in jail, a $500 fine and three years of probation on a felony charge of criminal vehicular operation for the Feb. 26 drunken-driving crash where his pickup struck three teenage pedestrians in Benson.

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As part of his sentence handed down by District Judge David L. Mennis in Swift County District Court, Woodin was ordered to pay $546.79 in restitution, complete chemical dependency treatment, not use alcohol or drugs, not be in the presence of people using alcohol or drugs, not enter bars or liquor stores, take medications as prescribed and write an apology letter.

Also included in the 14 conditions of probation were requirements that he attend cognitive skills training and submit to 90 days of electronic alcohol monitoring.

Woodin was ordered to serve 183 days in jail immediately, with credit for 122 days already served and the remaining 60 days staggered over the next two years. That time can be deferred if he is in compliance with probation conditions.

Woodin received a stay of imposition on his sentence. Under the stay, the felony conviction will be reduced to a misdemeanor if he complies with the probation conditions.

As part of a plea agreement, two additional felonies and six gross misdemeanor counts of criminal vehicular operation, two counts of gross misdemeanor driving while impaired and misdemeanor charges of open bottle were dismissed.

According to the complaint, when Woodin lost control of his pickup and struck three teenagers in Benson, he had a blood alcohol content of 0.144 and was drinking vodka while driving before the crash. The DWI threshold is 0.08 percent.

A witness saw Woodin running from the scene of the crash near the intersection of State Highway 29 and U.S. Highway 12 in Benson. Law enforcement officers found him hiding in a closet of a residence along Nevada Avenue.

The three teens, Dillion Groebner, 16, Gregory Boley, 18, and Brandon Fifield, 16, were transported by ambulance to Swift County-Benson Hospital and were treated for pain in their limbs, cuts and bruises. One of the teens also had a chipped tooth.

According to the complaint, a Benson police officer and a Benson ambulance service member were the first people on the scene. One teen was unconscious, one was lying in a snowbank and the other standing between the two. A woman left sitting in the pickup said Woodin was driving and drinking vodka, that he was "really drunk" and that he ran away. The ambulance crew member also saw the driver run from the scene.

Benson police officers and Swift County sheriff's deputies followed the man's footprints in the snow to a home on Kansas Avenue, where no one answered the door.

They then went to a residence on Nevada Avenue, where the owner let them search the home. An officer followed the smell of alcohol to Woodin, who was hiding in a closet under a pile of clothing, bedding and pillows.

The woman gave a statement to police that she let Woodin drive because he became violent and was scaring her. She said the pickup was going about 40 mph, started to fishtail, hit a sign and then the three boys. She also said he asked her to get in the driver's seat after the crash.

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