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Minnesota man with 17 prior DWIs was on meth when he crashed

Marshall Anthony Knoll, 59, of Rosemount, Minn. Courtesy of the Dakota County Sheriff's Office

ROSEMOUNT, Minn.—A 59-year-old man from the Twin Cities suburb of Rosemount with 17 prior driving while intoxicated convictions was on meth and amphetamines when he caused a serious-injury crash last fall, prosecutors allege.

The Dakota County attorney's office said Monday, Aug. 20, that Marshall Anthony Knoll is charged with ­felony first-degree driving while impaired, felony criminal vehicular operation resulting in great bodily harm, felony criminal vehicular operation resulting in substantial bodily harm and gross-misdemeanor driving after cancellation. All charges are in connection with the Oct. 20 four-vehicle crash on U.S. 52.

The illegal drugs were discovered in Knoll's blood during an analysis by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension, the county attorney's office said.

"Driving under the influence of illegal drugs or alcohol poses a significant risk to public safety and too often results in serious injuries or death," Dakota County Attorney Jim Backstrom said in a statement Monday.

Knoll was charged by warrant March 29, but was not arrested until July 18. He remained in the Dakota County jail Monday in lieu of $250,000 bail.

According to a criminal complaint:

The crash happened near the intersection of U.S. 52 and 210th Street East at about 7 p.m.

Witnesses told law enforcement officers the driver of a pickup truck, who was pulling a trailer, was driving erratically and at a high rate of speed in the northbound lanes of U.S. 52.

Traffic came to a complete stop on U.S. 52, but the driver of the truck, later identified as Knoll, did not slow down and rear-ended a vehicle at approximately 50 mph.

One motorist suffered several bone fractures and internal bleeding, while a second occupant of the vehicle had spinal cord injuries.

Officers at the scene saw that Knoll had bloodshot and watery eyes, slurred speech and lethargic movements and was unsteady on his feet, according to the complaint. After Knoll finished the standardized field-sobriety tests, the deputy received a search warrant for a blood sample.

Knoll's prior DWI convictions in Minnesota date back to 1979 and involve both alcohol and illegal drugs, the county attorney's office said. His criminal history also includes convictions for theft, carrying a pistol without a permit, domestic assault and disorderly conduct. Knoll is due back in Dakota County District Court on Oct. 25.

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