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Man spends night trapped in auto wreck near Strawberry Lake

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A man spent 11 hours trapped in a vehicle about two miles north of Strawberry Lake after he missed a rural intersection in the fog and drove into the woods on Friday evening.

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Richard Michael Person, 33, no address available, was listed in stable condition at St. Mary's Innovis Hospital on Tuesday.

The accident occurred about 11 p.m. Friday just south of Little Rat Lake in Maple Grove Township, at the intersection of 370th Avenue and 336th Street.

The wreck was discovered by an area resident about 10 a.m. the next day.

Person told White Earth tribal police officer Jeremy Cossette that he missed the intersection in the fog and his vehicle went off into the woods.

It was discovered the next morning by David Baity, 37, who told Cossette that he had heard something and went to investigate, thinking maybe there was a hunter on his property.

At the intersection, he saw tracks leading onto his property, followed them, and found the wreck, with Person still trapped inside.

When officer Cossette arrived, he found Person on the floorboard area on the driver's side, with a blanket over him. He gave him medical attention until EMS and firefighters arrived and freed him. Cossette first called for a Life Flight helicopter, but it was unable to respond because of the weather conditions.

Person denied being intoxicated at the time of the crash. He told the officer he had planned to go drinking that night, but had not been drinking at the time of the crash. He said he drank some beer while trapped in the vehicle because he became dehydrated, according to the accident report.

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