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Woman facing charges for being high on drugs, crashing into and kiling Litchfield, Minn., woman

Noelle Pridgen custody mug

LITCHFIELD, Minn.—Authorities now say a woman was high on illegal drugs April 15 when she crashed into another vehicle, igniting it and killing a Litchfield woman inside.

A warrant and criminal complaint were issued Aug. 10 for Noelle Anise Pridgen, 28, of Ontonagon, Michigan. The Meeker County Sheriff's Office listed an address of Clermont, Florida. She made her first court appearance Monday.

Pridgen is now facing five charges in Meeker County District Court, including felony criminal vehicular homicide and criminal vehicular operation, gross misdemeanor criminal vehicular operation, and misdemeanor driving without insurance.

It is alleged that Pridgen blew through a Darwin stop sign while high

on cocaine and THC, the active ingredient of cannabis.

Christina L. Crottier, 36, died in the late night, two-car crash on Meeker County Road 14 and U.S. Highway 12.

Five people, including Pridgen, were seriously injured.

Crottier's husband, Billy J. Crottier, then 35, was left with a traumatic brain injury and broken ribs. Their children, 3-year-old Alexis Crottier and 7-year-old Zachary Crottier, were also seriously injured, one of whom also had broken ribs and a concussion.

Around 11:38 p.m. April 15, Pridgen had been traveling south in a 2014 Dodge Charger on County Road 14, according to the original State Patrol report.

She broadsided the 2007 Dodge Magnum carrying the Crottier family, which had been traveling west on Highway 12.

The Magnum was engulfed in flames following the crash, according to the criminal complaint, and Christina Crottier was unable to be removed from the vehicle.

Pridgen and a passenger, Tamya D. Hill, then 20, of Kittery, Maine, also suffered serious injuries in the crash.

Road conditions were dry at the time of the crash, and no alcohol was detected in either driver.

The vehicle Pridgen was driving, which she did not own, was not insured at the time of the crash.

Just two days before the complaint was issued, authorities received results from a state Bureau of Criminal Apprehension analysis of a blood sample from after the crash, which court documents say confirmed the presence of cocaine and THC in Pridgen's blood.

Pridgen's next hearing is set for Aug. 29 in Meeker County District Court She is being held in the Meeker County Jail on $250,000 conditional bail.

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