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Winter storm in northwest Indiana doesn’t deter drunk drivers from using the roadways



Hammond, Indiana – Despite blizzard-like conditions, drunk drivers continued to use the interstates in northwest Indiana during the record winter storm that affected most of the country.

Three accidents involving suspected drunk drivers were reported by Indiana State Police.

The first incident happened on December 23 at around 6 p.m. in Porter County on Interstate 94 as emergency personnel was attempting to clear up a collision. Troopers observed a car strike a semi and drive away. Following the automobile, one of the troopers discovered it in a ditch. The motorist was taken to a hospital for a chemical test after declining a breathalyzer at the scene.

A number of charges have been brought against Tiffany M. Bergstrom, 32, of Chesterton, Indiana, who was later taken to the Porter County Jail.

The second incident happened in Jasper County on Christmas Eve at roughly 6:30 a.m.

A trooper was dispatched to a car accident involving trees in the southbound lanes. The trooper thought the motorist might be under the influence while they spoke. The Jasper County Sheriff’s Department performed and recorded a breath test. 27% BAC.

Due to his high test results, the driver, Frank J. Dado, 45, of Hammond, was subsequently brought to a medical institution. He was returned to the sheriff’s office for processing after being cleared.

In the course of the inquiry, it was also discovered that Dado was wanted in Michigan for failing to appear in a case of drunk driving. He will be extradited to Michigan for this crime.

Just before 7 o’clock on Christmas Eve, a collision at a scale house on I-65 resulted in the third arrest.

Responding to 911 complaints about a car that had collided with the I-65 scale house near the Lowell exit, troopers went to the scene. According to the early findings of the inquiry, a black 2015 Toyota Rav4 entered the closed-scale ramp quickly and collided with the yellow gate arm. The 20-foot-long steel gate entered via the front of the car and left out the back. The driver was not struck by the steel fence and was observed leaving the car after the collision.

The driver’s actions suggested possible impairment and warranted further examination.

Rebeca L. Claus, the driver, is a 33-year-old woman from Shelby, Indiana. She was given the option to submit to a verified chemical test, but she declined. She was later taken to Franciscan Hospital in Crown Point, where she once more resisted participating in any chemical tests.

Claus will be charged with Driving Under the Influence (Class A Misdemeanor) and Driving Under the Influence (Class C Misdemeanor).