USA: Law firm president charged with hit-and-run, DWI in Pine County

PINE CITY, Minn. — The head of a prominent personal injury law firm was intoxicated and acknowledged taking sleeping pills before injuring a construction worker in a hit-and-run crash Friday, Oct. 6, authorities said.

James Patrick Carey, 64, was arraigned Monday morning on four charges in the Interstate 35 collision near Hinckley. The president and managing partner of SiebenCarey was expected to be released from custody a short time later, having spent the weekend in the Pine County Jail.

Carey, according to a criminal complaint, claimed he was not aware he hit the worker, though he acknowledged leaving the scene, and authorities said he showed signs of impairment.

The complaint says the worker, Joseph Gregory Flanagan, 27, of Duluth, was wearing a high-visibility vest and had just finished removing cones from one of the northbound lanes. He was walking on a dirt shoulder toward his truck when he was clipped by the passing vehicle around 11:40 a.m.

A trooper who arrived on the scene found tire marks indicating a car had driven onto the shoulder before correcting back onto the road. The complaint says pieces of a side mirror also were found on the shoulder, with a part number identifying it as belonging to a 2016 GMC Acadia.

At least two witnesses also told troopers that they saw the collision. One motorist said the vehicle had been driving onto the shoulder to pass slower traffic in the construction zone, according to the complaint.

A Carlton County sheriff’s deputy found a matching Acadia with a missing passenger side mirror near Moose Lake a short time later. Officers wrote that Carey, the driver, had an odor of alcohol and bloodshot, watery eyes.

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