Charges Filed in Fiery Crash North of Moorhead - Valley News Live - KVLY/KXJB - Fargo/Grand Forks

Charges Filed in Fiery Crash

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Charges have been filed against a Minot woman involved in a fiery crash near Moorhead. A criminal complaint says Brianna Pallotta, 25, was drunk when she crashed into a car driven by Nolan Underlee,83, of Hendrum. Underlee's wife was also in the car at the time.

Witnesses said Pallotta was going 85-90 miles per hour on Highway 75 north of Moorhead before the crash happened. A Clay County Deputy who pulled Pallotta from her burning car said he smelled alcohol.

Pallotta later told investigators she had been drinking and does not remember the crash. She is charged with two counts of felony DWI and two counts of criminal vehicular operation.

Nolan Underlee is still in the hospital.

Original Story

An elderly couple is in critical condition after a crash north of Moorhead late Tuesday night.

The Minnesota State Patrol says a car was going south on Highway 75 just after 9:30 p.m. when it tried to pass a vehicle, but ended up hitting another car going north, head-on.

83-year-old Nolan and 79-year-old Doris Underlee of Hendrum, Minnesota were in the car that was hit, and are both in critical condition. The driver of the other car, 25-year-old Brianna Pallotta of Minot, North Dakota has minor injuries.

After the collision, the cars caught fire and Pallotta became pinned in the driver seat of her car and was unable to get out.

Clay County Deputy Mark Empting was the first to arrive on scene and immediately jumped into action. Using a pry bar from his squad car and with the assistance of bystanders on scene, they were able pull Pallotta from the burning car.

A blood sample taken from Pallotta, does indicate that alcohol was involved in the crash. The Minnesota State Patrol is waiting for the results of their investigation to determine if Pallotta will be charged.

The Underlee's remain hospitalized in critical condition and Pallotta is still hospitalized with non-life threatening injuries.   

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