News and Press Releases

St. Michael Man Pleads Guilty to Involuntary Manslaughter

July 24, 2012

FARGO - U.S. Attorney Timothy Q. Purdon announced that on July 24, 2012, Douglas Allen Baker, a/k/a Douglas Lawrence, of St. Michael, N.D., pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Ralph R. Erickson to a charge of involuntary manslaughter.

On September 8, 2011, Baker was driving his vehicle traveling east on BIA Road #6, an asphalt two-lane road in rural St. Michael, N.D. Upon exiting a curve and while driving at an excessive rate of speed, Baker drove completely in the west-bound lane and collided head-on with an on-coming vehicle, causing the death of Dana Grow, the driver of that vehicle. Grow, of Grand Forks, N.D., was on his way to work at 7:22 a.m. when the crash occurred.

It was determined later by law enforcement that Baker’s blood alcohol concentration was .210. The incident occurred on Sept. 8, 2011, on the Spirit Lake Indian Reservation.

The charge of involuntary manslaughter carries a statutory maximum penalty of eight years' imprisonment.

The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Bureau of Indian Affairs and the Fort Totten Police Department.

Sentencing for Baker has been scheduled for Oct. 15, 2012, in U.S. District Court in Fargo, N.D., at 11:00 a.m.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Janice M. Morley is prosecuting the case.




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