Sunday, May 26, 2024

Whitefish man brought up on child endangerment charge following auto wreck

Hagadone News Network | June 8, 2022 1:00 AM

Authorities say the Whitefish man who got into a May 29 automobile wreck near McGregor Lake with four children in his vehicle was under the influence of alcohol at the time of the crash.

Dustin Anthony Donsbach, 29, faces a single count of child endangerment in Flathead County District Court. His arraignment on the felony charge is scheduled for June 16.

Montana Highway Patrol troopers arrested Donsbach after responding to a two-vehicle crash not far from the lake. The driver of the vehicle Donsbach allegedly struck told investigators that he was taking a left turn when Donsbach’s vehicle rammed him from the rear. The collision left his car with “extensive damage,” troopers reported.

For his part, Donsbach acknowledged being behind the wheel during the crash, court documents said. His significant other told troopers that they did not see a blinker and were attempting to pass the vehicle on the left when the collision occurred.

When one of the troopers mentioned smelling the odor of an alcoholic beverage on Donsbach, he allegedly admitted to drinking. During the investigation, authorities also found several open beer cans in Donsbach’s vehicle along with four children ranging from babies to toddlers in age, court documents said.

Donsbach agreed to a breath test, which came back twice over the legal limit, charging documents said. He was booked in the county jail May 30 and initially held on a $40,000 bond before being released on June 2.

If convicted, he faces up to a decade behind bars and a maximum fine of $50,000.