Suspect arrested in St. Paul crash - KMSP-TV

Dad arrested in St. Paul crash after fleeing, leaving injured kids

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ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) -

Police in St. Paul, Minn. have caught a man who ran away and left two injured children behind in a car after crashing into a construction hole early Tuesday morning.

Police have identified the driver as 45-year-old Earl Lionell Ward of Brooklyn Center, Minn. and he was arrested Tuesday night at a relative's house, the Pioneer Press reported. Ward was also wanted in Hennepin County for felony domestic assault, and has been known to frequent the cities of Minneapolis and Brooklyn Center.

The crash happened shortly after 3:20 a.m. at the intersection of Hazel Street and Mechanic Avenue, on the east side of St. Paul. People near the scene of the crash said they could hear 8-year-old Almond Ward and 14-year-old Amarya Ward screaming from inside the car, which was stuck in the hole. The children are currently at Gillette Children's Specialty Healthcare and the family is requesting privacy and will not be releasing any further information, Gillette Children's confirmed. Amarya was left with a broken neck and Almond suffered a broken femur with a severed artery in the same leg.

The incident started when the children, their mother Della Svenningsen and Ward had been at Vali-Hi Drive in Lake Elmo. Svenningsen told the paper she was planning to leave him because he was doing drugs, and was told by her 20-year-old son at the drive-in that Ward had been smoking something. The family left, and driving the van, she said Ward didn't think he'd let her leave, so she got out of the van, he got in the driver's seat and drove off. Svenningsen didn't see the accident just around the corner. Ward is also accused of abusing her in the past and had warrants for his arrest in two cases he's been charged in, both involving Svenningsen.


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