MADISON -- A Dodgeville man arrested after an off-duty firefighter was killed while assisting a disabled motorist along a Dane County highway won't be charged with homicide by drunken driving.
District Attorney Ismael Ozanne said a blood draw taken after authorities obtained a search warrant showed Samuel Cremers' blood alcohol content was below the legal limit. Ozanne says Cremers is charged with causing death by knowingly driving while his driver's license was suspended.
Cremers appeared in Dane County Circuit Court Thursday and was released on a $5,000 signature bond. He is prohibited from drinking alcohol or driving a vehicle.
Lake Mills fire Capt. Christopher Truman had stopped at the scene of a crash on New Year's Eve to help a motorist along the beltline in Monona when he was struck and killed.
According to the Monona Police Department, a woman lost control of her vehicle on eastbound state Highway 12 on the Yahara River bridge just before 7 p.m.
The woman had exited her vehicle when Truman saw she needed assistance and pulled up behind the vehicle, with his emergency lights flashing.
"She was against the wall perpendicular to the road with the front of the vehicle facing north and the back of the car extending into lane one," said Ryan Losby, a detective with the Monona Police Department.
Truman parked his vehicle in the first lane of traffic. He told the woman to get back into her vehicle, which she did.
As police were en route to respond to the first accident, the second one occurred.
"The suspect's vehicle swerved from lane one into the emergency lane and struck the firefighter and the vehicle at the same time," Losby said. "Field sobriety tests were done, a PBT test (breathalyzer) was done, and a blood draw was done. We can't use the PBT in court, so we aren't releasing that. We are waiting for the results of the blood draw."
The female driver, her passenger and Truman were taken to hospitals, and Truman, 46, died shortly after arrival. Officials with the Dane County Medical Examiner's Office confirmed Truman died from injuries sustained in the crash.