By Lynda Jensen and Jennifer Gallus
MIDDLEVILLE TOWNSHIP, MN - A Waverly driver was charged with six counts of vehicular homicide Friday in relation to an accident that took the life of three of his friends.
Stephen Mark Dooher, 22, of Waverly was charged with six counts of vehicular homicide and had a warrant issued for his arrest. He turned himself in.
He was driving a 1984 Chevrolet Corvette that he recently purchased, when the car left the road into a wooded, steep embankment in Middleville Township, according to a Wright County Sheriff’s Office report.
Killed in the crash were Andrea Northern, 23, of South Haven; Michael Demars, 22, of Maple Lake; and Derek Kammerer, 22, of Maple Lake all of whom appeared to be ejected from the vehicle, according to the accident report.
The accident wasn’t detected until the next morning by a passerby. Dooher was pinned in the vehicle for that length of time. The crash took place between 9 and 11 p.m., according to statements made by Dooher to a deputy, as recorded in the criminal complaint. The crash was detected at 11:09 a.m. the next day.
The vehicle was traveling southbound on Wright County Road 7, and was found about a quarter mile south of the intersection of Wright County Road 35.
There is a stop sign at the intersection of Wright County Road 7 and 35. “It appeared to officers that the defendant failed to stop for the stop sign,” according to the criminal complaint.
Officers also believe the vehicle was traveling at a “high rate of speed” at the time of the crash in light of witness reports sighted the evening before, the significant distance the vehicle came to a rest from the roadway and the destruction sustained by the vehicle.
According to the criminal complaint, the car was a two-seater, with no seatbelts available for two of the four occupants.
When the accident was discovered, Dooher was transported to St. Cloud Hospital via ambulance, where he was treated and then later released.
Dooher has been charged with three counts of criminal vehicular homicide - operation of a motor vehicle in a grossly negligent manner, and three counts of criminal vehicular homicide - under influence alcohol.
Blood tests were taken of Dooher and sent to the BCA for evaluation. The results are not available yet.
The Wright County Sheriff’s Office was assisted at the scene by the Howard Lake Fire Department, Howard Lake Ambulance, Maple Lake Fire Department and Allina Ambulance.
The incident remains under investigation by the Wright County Medical Examiner and the Wright County Sheriff’s Office, according to the report.