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Driver pleads guilty to 4th DUI, causing near-fatal crash

Casey Lonesk's blood alcohol content was nearly three times the legal limit when he caused a crash on I-70 that sent a car down an embankment where it caught fire.
Credit: Eagle County
Casey Edward Lonesk

EAGLE COUNTY, Colo. — A man who was traveling in excess of 100 mph when he clipped a car on Interstate 70 near Vail, causing it to roll down an embankment and catch fire, pleaded guilty to DUI and leaving the scene of an accident, according to the Fifth Judicial District Attorney's Office.

Casey Edward Lonesk, 42, of Roeland Park, Kansas, has three previous DUIs in Kansas dating back to 2008.

He pleaded guilty Wednesday to a total of four felony counts related to a July 20 multiple vehicle crash near Vail Pass. They include two counts of vehicular assault/DUI and two counts of leaving the scene of an accident.

Witnesses reported that Lonesk was speeding on westbound I-70 and ultimately caused the collision by clipping a vehicle from behind and causing another to roll over the embankment from I-70 onto Highway 6.

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That vehicle turned over several times before finally coming to rest in an irrigation ditch near the Eagle River at Wolcott Junction. The vehicle caught fire as a result of the crash and first responders had to pull the victims to safety.

The victims of the crash suffered multiple injuries including rib fractures, lacerations, contusions, and abrasions.

Despite causing the crash, Lonesk left the scene and was later confronted by Colorado State Patrol troopers in his damaged, stalled truck.

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He was arrested after refusing to perform roadside maneuvers for suspected intoxication and taken to the hospital. A blood draw there showed that Lonesk's blood alcohol content was .237- that's nearly three times the legal limit for driving in Colorado.

Lonesk is scheduled to be sentenced on Feb. 5, 2020, and under the terms of the plea agreement could get probation or a prison sentence of up to 18 years.

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