Suspected drunk driver hits two pedestrians in Columbia Heights, killing one

14 July 2023

A suspected drunk driver hit two people on a Columbia Heights sidewalk late Thursday, killing one and seriously injuring the other, authorities said.

A 35-year-old Minneapolis man was driving a 1998 BMW convertible south on Central Avenue while drunk when he left the road at 39th Avenue about 10:30 p.m. and struck Carrie Lynn Rivero and James Junior Beller, the Minnesota State Patrol said.

Rivero, 58, of Minneapolis, died at the scene. Beller, 63, of Minneapolis, was taken to Hennepin County Medical Center with life-threatening injuries.

The driver was treated for injuries at HCMC and then booked into the Anoka County jail on suspicion of criminal-vehicular homicide and criminal-vehicular operation, causing great-bodily harm while under the influence of alcohol.

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