Chesterton Tribune

Man charged in fatal crash

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A Portage resident has been charged with operating while intoxicated in connection with a fatal two vehicle accident on Tuesday at the intersection of U.S. Highway 20 and Wagner Road, Porter Police said.

According to police, Brian Alan Otto, 24, of 2355 Hickory St., was charged with OWI and transported to Porter County Jail following the crash. No information was available on his blood alcohol content.

At approximately 6:52 p.m., police said, Otto was westbound on U.S. 20 in a Ford pickup truck when he attempted to turn left onto southbound Wagner Road and struck the driver’s side door of a Honda passenger car eastbound on U.S. 20 and driven by Lance Stroobandt, 37, of Michigan City.

At 7:20 p.m. Stroobandt was pronounced dead at the scene by Chief Deputy Coroner Robert Byrd after a lengthy and difficult extrication performed by Porter firefighters. In an autopsy conducted on Wednesday, Coroner Vicki Deppe ruled the cause of death to be multiple massive blunt force trauma, she told the Chesterton Tribune today.

Otto was carrying a driver’s license listing his place of residence as Panama City Beach, Fla., but the PCJ booking roster listed it as Portage.

Police said the Prosecuting Attorney’s Office is reviewing the case.


Posted 8/21/2008