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Fatal-crash driver tests positive for pain-killing drugs
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accidents River Falls, 54022
River Falls Wisconsin 2815 Prairie Drive / P.O. Box 25 54022

Prosecutors said a Racine County man was under the influence of prescription drugs when he allegedly caused a traffic crash that killed a 42-year-old woman.

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A $50,000 bond was ordered for 38-year-old Daniel Hess of Caledonia, after he was charged with homicide by intoxicated driving. Authorities said Hess was driving home from work April 2 when his vehicle crossed a centerline, sideswiped a car, and then collided with another vehicle head-on.

The head-on collision killed driver Michelle Schluechtermann of Caledonia. Officials said Hess tested positive for methadone, hydro-morphone, and oxycodone. A state crime lab analyst said Hess's level of oxycodone would have been enough to impair him.

He's due back in court Oct. 25, when a judge will decide if there's enough evidence to put Hess on trial.

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