Reporting Mike Binkley
MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – An 18-year-old from Princeton was killed in a crash Monday night on Highway 95 in Mille Lacs County, according to the Minnesota State Patrol.
Authorities responded to a two-vehicle crash at about 5:50 p.m. Monday on Highway 95 at 160th Avenue in Mille Lacs County.
The State Patrol says a 1999 GMC Sierra was headed northbound on County Road 7 and a 2007 Saturn Ion was headed eastbound on Highway 95. The GMC Sierra ran a stop sign, broadsiding the Saturn on the passenger side.
A passenger in the Saturn was pronounced dead at the scene. The victim was identified as Hannah R. Middleton, 18, of Princeton. She was a 2013 graduate of Princeton High School where she was a standout on the swim team.
Now, a lot of people in the area are saying “not again.” Princeton High School went through a lot of pain when six students died in four separate crashes. That was in 2006 and 2007.
“It’s crazy to think about something like that, and how fast your life can be cut short,” sophomore student Liz Brooks said.
The school made the announcement during first hour of classes and offered counseling to those who needed it.
“A few of my friends went because they’re swimmers,” Alicia Maltz said. “I remember they walked in and their faces were red from crying. Everyone was just really sad.”
Middleton’s boyfriend, Nathan Beehler, who was driving, suffered non-life threatening injuries.
The driver of the GMC Sierra, a 33-year-old man, suffered non-life threatening injuries.
Middleton may never have seen that driver. The State Patrol said he was unfamiliar with the area, but it’s not clear why he didn’t stop at the stop sign. Alcohol is not suspected.
The driver has not been arrested, but the investigation continues.