Driver arrested after crashing car into Eau Claire City - WXOW News 19 La Crosse, WI – News, Weather and Sports |

Driver arrested after crashing car into Eau Claire City Hall

Denise Marten Denise Marten

Eau Claire (WQOW) - Eau Claire police believe the driver who crashed into city hall Tuesday night may have been huffing.

Denise Marten was arrested for operating under the influence. It's her 3-rd offense.

Police say she was driving down East Grand Avenue when she smashed into an entrance on the building's south side. Marten was not seriously hurt, and no one else was injured. Eau Claire police say they found items in her car that led them to believe she may have been huffing.

"Marten did indicate that several days prior, she had been huffing intoxicants, however she did not admit to huffing earlier that day, so we'll be conducting an investigation and waiting for results from the state crime lab to determine exactly what types of intoxicants were in her blood stream at the time of the crash," says Officer Kyle Roder.

The city says it's working with its insurance company to put a price on the damage, and figure out who's responsible for the costs.

"It's fortunate that nobody was injured. It was a pretty significant event, we had substantial damage to the outside of the building, nothing structural. We're still working on the costs, so we do not have a cost estimate at this time, and we're actually looking at all options, so we'll have to take a peek and see if we want to put exactly back what was there before or not," says Russ Van Gompel, Eau Claire's City Manager.

Marten is expected to be charged in the next few days. The results from the state crime lab could take several weeks.

-----------------------------------------------------------------------

Eau Claire (WQOW) - A woman is arrested, after driving straight into city hall. It happened around 5:30 Tuesday night at the South entrance to city hall. Police say 42-year-old Denise Marten drove her car into the building. Someone who was inside the building at the time said it sounded like an explosion had gone off. She was not injured. Police say it's lucky that no one was walking on the sidewalk.

"The structural stability of the building is good, but there is some damage that will still have to be assessed after the car is moved," says Eau Claire Battalion Chief Allyn Bertrang.

Crews removed the car from the building around 10 p.m. Tuesday night. The power had to be shut off at city hall. The city manager says that entrance will be closed.

Marten was arrested for third offense operating a motor vehicle while under the influence, possession of drug paraphernalia and abuse of hazardous substances. She sustained minor injuries in the crash.

Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 WorldNow and WXOW. All Rights Reserved.
For more information on this site, please read our Privacy Policy, Terms of Service and Mobile Privacy Policy & Terms of Service.

Persons with disabilities who need assistance with issues relating to the content of this station's public inspection file should contact Administrative Assistant Theresa Wopat at 507-895-9969. Questions or concerns relating to the accessibility of the FCC's online public file system should be directed to the FCC at 888-225-5322, at 888-835-5322 (TTY) or at fccinfo@fcc.gov.