Wednesday, March 20, 2019

Wolf Point man admits charge in fatal crash

GREAT FALLS – Wolf Point resident Andrew Preston Martell admitted on Monday he had been drinking and driving under the influence on the Fort Peck Indian Reservation last October when he crashed his vehicle, killing one of his passengers, U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme said.

Martell, 32, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter. He faces a maximum eight years in prison, a $250,000 fine and three years of supervised release.

U.S. District Judge Brian M. Morris presided and set sentencing for June 27. Martell is detained.

Prosecutors said the crash occurred at about 10 p.m. on Oct. 1, 2018 on a county road known as Swimming Pool Road, near Wolf Point. Martell had been drinking alcohol heavily throughout the evening and was driving around the reservation with two female passengers. Martell drove off the straight road and crashed in a ditch. The vehicle rotated and rolled end over end coming to rest on the driver’s side. All three occupants were trapped in the vehicle and had to be extricated by emergency responders. One of the passengers was impaled by a crutch in the vehicle and died at the scene. Martell’s blood alcohol concentration was about 0.182 percent.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Cassady Adams prosecuted the case, which was investigated by the FBI, Montana Highway Patrol, Wolf Point Police Department and Fort Peck Tribes Law Enforcement.

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