Felony Charges Filed After Pedestrian Hit by Suspected Drunken Driver in Downtown Stillwater

A 26-year-old man was charged with felony criminal operation of a vehicle after hitting a pedestrian on Water Street in downtown Stillwater last weekend.

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Jacob Sjoestrand

At about 2:20 a.m. July 19,  Stillwater police were patrolling bar close on foot when heard a revving engine and saw a vehicle swerving and speeding onto Water Street from Chestnut just before it hit a pedestrian.

Officers started running to their squad cars to stop the truck, when the officers heard a loud crash near the 300 block of Water Street South — and saw the truck hit a man who was standing with a group of people on the road near the Freight House.

According to police, the impact violently threw the pedestrian, Ryan Jacoby, 23, of Somerset, Wis., into the air, causing him to spin several times before landing face down on the ground.

Jacoby  was taken to Regions Hospital where he was treated for a broken nose, concussion and lacerations on his head and face.

The driver of the vehicle, Jacob Sjoestrand, of Spring Valley, Wis., was arrested at the scene and charged by the Washington County Attorney’s Office with two felony counts of criminal vehicular operation. Police believe Sjoestrand was travelling between 45-50 mph when his vehicle hit Jacoby.

After the crash, Sjoestrand attempted to drive away, according to the criminal complaint. But police were able to stop the vehicle near Rafters, where Sjoestrand was arrested.

While officers were investigating the crash, a crowd gathered around the squad car — with Sjoestrand seated in the back — and several people began yelling at the alleged drunk driver, threatening him and hitting the squad car windows.

As the crowd grew more hostile, police removed Sjoestrand from the area and took him to Lakeview Hospital to get a blood sample. Sjoestrand was then transported to jail, where refused to talk with police about the crash.

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