Cocktail of meds, revoked license, and grandson in the backseat: Albert Lea man charged with DWI

(Albert Lea, MN) – An Albert Lea man is accused of driving on a revoked license under the influence of a cocktail of medications with his grandson in the backseat.

Thirty-six-year-old Jeremiah Darwin Vanriper was charged in Freeborn County Court with gross misdemeanor counts of DWI and operating a motor vehicle with a controlled substance present.

According to the complaint, Vanriper was westbound on I-90 when a concerned caller reported to 911 dispatch that the Chevy he was driving was swerving over the fog and center lines.  The complainant followed Vanriper up an off-ramp and knocked on his window after seeing him slumped over in the driver’s seat.

Vanriper told the complainant he was having mechanical issues with his car and was going to the gas station for a tow, according to the complaint.  State troopers were dispatched to the gas station in Alden and found Vanriper sitting on the ground next to the building with his head between his knees.

Vanriper initially told the state patrol that someone else had been driving the vehicle, but eventually admitted it was him driving.  He told troopers his 3-year-old grandson was the only other occupant in the vehicle, according to court documents.  He denied any alcohol, marijuana, or drug use, but told police he was prescribed several medications.

Blood tests by the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension showed that Vanriper tested positive to oxycodone, oxymorphone, clonazepam, and a metabolite of clonazepam, all schedule I or II substances.

Vanriper’s license had been revoked from a previous driving under the influence in February 2016.

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