Man Charged in Connection to Fatal Wrong-Way Crash in Waite Park

Charlie Ray Barnett Photo: Stearns County Jail
Charlie Ray Barnett

July 11, 2018 03:41 PM

A St. Cloud man faces multiple charges after authorities say he was driving a vehicle involved in a fatal wrong-way crash in Waite Park. 

A criminal complaint states that Charlie Ray Barnett faces two counts of criminal vehicular homicide. 

Advertisement

Officers responded around 7:15 p.m. Tuesday to the intersection of Division Street and Second Avenue South on reports of a two-vehicle crash, according to the complaint. 

RELATED: Police: Wrong-Way Driver Hits Car in Waite Park, Kills 2

When officers arrived, they located a Chevrolet El Camino and Chevrolet Malibu that had suffered severe damage. 

The complaint said Richard Tomlinson, 61, of Grantsburg, Wisconsin, and 77-year-old Roger Nelson of Clearwater, both occupants of the El Camino, died from injuries sustained during the crash. 

Officers were able to identify Barnett as the driver of the Malibu.

A witness told investigators they saw Barnett's vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed down Division Street before it crossed the median and struck the El Camino. 

RELATED: 1 Injured in Waite Park Crash Following Police Pursuit

The complaint said officers found an aerosol bottle of dusting cleaner inside of Barnett's vehicle. Officers later learned that Barnett had a history of huffing dusting cleaner, according to the complaint.

Officers also learned Barnett had been at Best Buy prior to the collision. Video surveillance from the store showed a man matching Barnett's description walk into the store and purchase two cans of dusting cleaner. 

After being transported to the hospital, Barnett said he had a panic attack and does not remember the crash.

Barnett could face up to 20 years in prison if found guilty. 

Credits

Ben Rodgers

Copyright 2018 - KSTP-TV, LLC A Hubbard Broadcasting Company

Advertisement

Cannon Falls Cleans Up After Destructive Storms

Saturday to Start Chilly, Giving Way to Comfortable Afternoon

Officials Have Plans to Improve All-Natural, Oft-Closed Webber Pool in Minneapolis

GOP, Kavanaugh Accuser in Standoff Over Her Senate Testimony

Minneapolis Looks to Solve Flash Flooding Issues on North Side

Residents in Morristown Help Each Other Pick Up After Tornado

Advertisement