Man dies in suspected suicide in moving vehicle
A 31-year-old La Crosse man was found dead at the scene of a one-vehicle crash at the intersection of Homer Road and County Road 17 on Wednesday.
The man was the victim of an apparent suicide, deputy Winona police chief Tom Williams said Thursday.
La Crosse authorities on Wednesday alerted Winona-area law enforcement to an individual in the Winona area they believed to be armed, and possibly suicidal or homicidal in the area, giving a description of the man and the vehicle he was believed to be driving, Williams said.
An officer spotted the vehicle on Huff Street about 10 p.m., Williams said. The officer called for backup and followed the vehicle east on Hwy. 61, onto Hwy. 43 and Homer Road where other law enforcement officers were in position, Williams said.
In the vicinity of the National Guard Armory the officer activated his flashing lights and attempted a traffic stop, but the driver ignored him, the vehicle continuing along Homer Road to the roundabout where it vaulted the median, struck a streetlight pole, snapped it off, and continuing until it came to rest in a snowbank at the Pleasant Valley Church parking lot.
Officers approaching the vehicle found the driver dead of an apparent self-inflicted gunshot wound, Williams said.
The area was cordoned off and traffic re-routed until approximately 1:45 a.m. to allow for the incident to be investigated and the damaged streetlight removed.