Blaine man charged in crash that killed passenger

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

A Blaine man has been charged with criminal vehicular homicide as the result of a weekend car crash in Bloomington, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman announced Tuesday.

Nicholas Michael Lowers, 27, has been charged with one count of criminal vehicular homicide, operating a motor vehicle in a grossly negligent manner. He was also charged with one count of theft – take/drive motor vehicle, no owner consent and one count of fleeing a peace officer in a motor vehicle.

According to the criminal complaint, on Saturday, at 2:21 p.m., Bloomington police saw a silver Saturn with a missing front license plate at the intersection of American Blvd. East and 12th Ave S. The light was red and Lowers drove the Saturn into a parking lot, exited over a berm and then drove back over the sidewalk and onto the street.

The complaint states that the officer turned on the squad’s emergency lights and tried to stop Lowers’ car. But Lowers instead accelerated, driving east on American Boulevard. With the squad lights on, the officer pursued Lowers who sped through a green light at up to 90 mph at the intersection of 24th Ave & American Blvd.  Lowers continued driving eastbound and at 34th Avenue ran a red light. It appears that he tried to brake, but lost control of the car, drove through the intersection and collided with another car traveling south bound on 34th Ave. The Saturn then hit a traffic light pole and stopped.

Police made contact with Lowers and the other passenger in the Saturn, a 24-year-old woman. She was lying face down, wedged between the two front seats with her legs in the front passenger seat and her torso on the back seat. Initially, she was yelling about being hurt and stuck.  She suddenly stopped yelling and appeared to go limp, according to the complaint.  Officers saw that she was no longer breathing and appeared to have suffered a significant blow to the head. Officers performed CPR after which she was transported to Hennepin County Medical Center where she was pronounced dead at approximately 3:09 p.m.

Police spoke to the driver of the second vehicle. The victim reported to police that she hit her head as a result of the crash. She stated that she had a green light when she entered the intersection. Two witnesses who were traveling in the car behind her corroborated her story. Bloomington police conducted an investigation of Lowers’ car and the inspector concluded that the crash occurred due to the high speed of the driver, the complaint states.

Lowers is in custody and will make his first court appearance Wednesday afternoon.

Criminal Complaint (PDF)