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UPDATE: Driver of pickup in crash with semitrailer suspected of being under influence of marijuana, Cottage Grove police say

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Police said the pickup truck driver injured in a crash with a semitrailer on Wednesday in Cottage Grove may have been under the influence of marijuana.


Police said the 26-year-old Maplewood man was hospitalized after his pickup truck was struck by a semitrailer shortly before noon at the intersection of 70th Street and Lamar Avenue in old Cottage Grove. He was transported by ambulance to Regions Hospital with non-life-threatening injuries.

"The driver was suspected to be under the influence," Cottage Grove Police Capt. Pete Koerner said. Officers allegedly found a small amount of marijuana and drug paraphernalia in his truck.

The pickup driver, who police identified as Shawn Wlaschin, was turning west onto 70th Street from Lamar Avenue. The semitrailer was traveling east on 70th Street and had the right of way, Koerner said.

The semitrailer collided with the rear side of Wlaschin's pickup truck. The vehicles stopped on the north side of 70th Street, near the entrance to the Accacia Lodge and across the street from the Cottage Grove United Church of Christ. There was damage to both vehicles.

A passenger in the pickup truck, a 26-year-old St. Paul man, suffered minor injuries but refused medical attention at the scene. The driver of the semitrailer was not believed to be injured.

Wlaschin refused to provide a blood sample to police after the crash, but there were indications that he had been under the influence of marijuana, Koerner said. Wlaschin could face criminal charges.

Scott Wente
Scott Wente has been editor at the South Washington County Bulletin since 2011. He worked as a reporter at other Forum Communications newspapers from 2003 to 2011. He is a graduate of the University of Wisconsin-River Falls.
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