May 29, 2018 10:09 PM
The Minnesota State Patrol said it obtained a search warrant for blood samples of the driver of a car that crashed and killed a passenger Saturday morning and considers the case a criminal investigation.
"With a fatality and a search warrant, so we can test the driver's blood, means we do consider this a criminal investigation, but we cannot comment any further than that," State Patrol Lt. Tiffani Nelson said.
20-year-old James Lapsley, of Prior Lake, has been identified by the State Patrol as the driver of the 2012 Ford Fusion that veered off Interstate 35W just south of the Burnsville Parkway exit around 7:15 a.m. Saturday and slammed into a sound barrier, killing 19-year-old Kayli Thompson of Apple Valley.
The state patrol said preliminary tests showed alcohol was not a factor in the accident. But, when investigators obtained a search warrant for blood samples, it indicates they are attempting to rule out the possibility of illegal narcotics in the investigation as well.
20-year-old, Blake Hathaway, of Prior Lake, told 5 EYEWITNESS NEWS Lapsley and Thompson were at his family's home just hours before the crash and mentioned, "drug use did happen."
"I did not use any alcohol, or drugs," Hathaway said. "But, a very good friend of mine did take a pill and I had about six people at the house after a day of boating and Lapsley and Thompson left on their own early Saturday morning and did not come back."
Hathaway said the other people at the home had left prior to Lapsley's and Thompson's departure, and he believes he might have been one of the last people to see them both alive.
Hathaway told KSTP he had not yet talked with investigators about the night at his house, but is willing to do so.
"I have not talked to them about what happened here," Hathaway said. "I am willing to talk with them and provide them with any information they need and I am sure I will be talking to them at some point."
KSTP went to a Prior Lake address listed to James Lapsley to get his side of the story, but when a reporter and photographer approached a car he was riding in, the car continued into a garage and the door closed without any comment from Lapsley.
Lapsley has not been arrested and he has not received any citations connected to the accident.
KSTP shared Hathaway's new information with Brandon Thompson at his Burnsville home Tuesday. He is the father of Kayli.
"I hope he will talk with investigators about what he knows," Thompson said. "As a father, you want to know what happened in a tragedy like this and what he knows could help investigators."
Updated: May 29, 2018 10:09 PM
Created: May 29, 2018 08:40 PM
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