A Waseca man is accused of driving an ATV under the influence of alcohol, crashing and causing severe injury to one of the passengers.

John Robert McNair III, 21, of Waseca, was charged with felony and gross misdemeanor criminal vehicular operation, in addition to three other misdemeanor charges. He was reportedly driving an ATV in rural Waseca with three passengers, when the vehicle turned over, and one of the passengers, who was sitting on another's lap, was launched out.

According to the complaint, when a deputy arrived on scene, he observed the injured passenger with gouges in her legs and feet, along with a "large goose egg" on her forehead. Her right foot was also bleeding heavily from a deep laceration.

It was later found that she had broken her wrist and right foot and would need screws and a plate in her foot. She also needed skin grafts on her shin and foot, where the lacerations and puncture wounds occurred. 

Investigators spoke to the parties involved and found that McNair had been driving the ATV with three passengers. One passenger was in the back, one was sitting on the passenger seat and the woman who was injured was sitting on the lap of the person in the passenger seat.

McNair and the witnesses said the ATV swerved hard and rolled on its side. When the ATV rolled, the injured passenger "went flying off the (other passenger's) lap and landed on the road."

A breathalyzer test reportedly found McNair had a .082 blood alcohol content level, which is .002 above the legal driving limit in Minnesota. McNair was placed under arrest for DWI. A blood test later reportedly found an alcohol concentration of .059.

According to the complaint, investigators did not observe any signs leading up to the crash scene that indicated fishtailing or aggressive driving. McNair reportedly told investigators that something pulled the wheels to the left and that when he attempted to correct back to the right, the vehicle rolled. He told investigators that he "thought he was only traveling about 10 miles per hour when he crashed."

Reach Editor Philip Weyhe at 507-931-8567 or follow him on Twitter @EditorPhilipWeyhe.

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St. Peter Herald, Waseca County News and Le Sueur County News managing editor. Email at editor@stpeterherald.com. Call at 507-931-8567.

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