Warrant: Lawyer Who Fatally Hit Jogger Was Using Data During Collision

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) – New information suggests a prominent St. Paul attorney may have been using his cellphone when he hit and killed a jogger.

A car hit and killed 35-year-old Scott Spoo while he was running along Mississippi River Boulevard in late February.

Police say 60-year-old Peter Berge was behind the wheel of the vehicle that struck and killed Spoo.

The search warrant shows an active data session on Berge’s cellphone for 23 minutes, including the exact time that he hit and killed Spoo.

“We know from statistics that it only takes a second of your attention to be distracted and miss something important and miss someone’s life, it can wait,” said Nick Mason.

Mason is with the Bicycle Alliance of Minnesota, a group pushing for tougher penalties for people convicted of distracted driving.
He says the new developments are heartbreaking.

“We have a bright young person in Scott who was a vibrant member of our community whose life was cut short because someone just wanted to be on Facebook and they should have been giving all their attention to the road,” Mason said.

According to the document, after Berge hit Spoo, he continued to use his phone while he was in the back of a police squad car.

An officer eventually had to take the phone away from him when they realized it could be an important part of the investigation.

Berge’s friend insists his impaired behavior during the time of the crash was caused by stage 4 brain cancer.

That search warrant also says Berge was involved in another crash just minutes before hitting and killing Spoo.

A woman told police her car was hit in Minneapolis on 6th Street while she was waiting to get on Eastbound 94.

She said she had to get Berge’s attention because he didn’t realize he hit her car.

A separate search warrant has been filed with Facebook, to figure out if Berge was posting or commenting during the fatal crash.

Hennepin County prosecutors will decide if Berge will face charges due to potential conflicts in Ramsey County.

So far, Berge has not been charged.

More from Reg Chapman
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