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Man charged with driving into parked car at 113 mph in suicide bid gets deferred sentence

FARGO — A West Fargo man who pleaded guilty to allegations he tried to kill himself by driving into a parked car at more than 100 mph has received a deferred sentence in Cass County District Court.

John P. Milligan, who was 62 when he was charged in August with reckless endangerment and reckless driving, pleaded guilty to both charges on Monday, Dec. 3.

On the reckless endangerment charge, imposition of sentence was deferred and Milligan is required to take part in Cass County's mental health diversion program as a condition of probation.

He was given 30 days in jail on the reckless driving charge, which was stayed.

According to court documents, Milligan attempted suicide on Aug. 2 by driving his vehicle into a parked vehicle on Interstate 29 at about 113 mph. He was hospitalized for a time after the crash.

A North Dakota Highway Patrol trooper requested Milligan be charged after investigating the crash and learning from Milligan drove by the abandoned vehicle twice beforehand to make sure it was empty.

The trooper said in a report that even a trained law enforcement officer can have difficulty determining whether a vehicle is occupied even standing next to the vehicle and looking in through the windows.

The trooper also said in the report that given traffic on I-29 at the time of the crash, there was great potential for more than just Milligan to be injured or killed by his action.

Dave Olson
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