Charges: Friend died when man tried to drive across Kettle River in Minnesota

The 43-year-old Minnesota man tried to drive across the Kettle River.
Author:
Updated:
Original:
Preston Prokasky

Preston Prokasky

A 43-year-old man is facing vehicular homicide charges after he allegedly intentionally drove his vehicle into a river in east-central Minnesota, killing a passenger. 

According to a criminal complaint, Preston P. Prokasky, of Willow River, was with two men on Sept. 16 when he decided to try and drive across the Kettle River around 3:45 p.m., in the area of 80124 River Run Road in Pine County.

A deputy dispatched to the scene arrived to find Prokasky and another man drenched near the bank of the river. There were tire tracks going through a sandy area leading to the river, but no vehicle was visible. 

Prokasky told investigators that he attempted to drive his 2004 Ford Escape across the river, claiming that he was unaware the water was too deep to cross in a vehicle. Once the car entered the river, it began to sink. 

Prokasky and a passenger in the back seat were able to escape through the driver's side window, but another passenger in the front seat didn't make it out. The victim has been identified as 47-year-old Eugene Oestreich, who was found dead inside the car that was submerged in approximately 14 feet of water. 

Sign up: Subscribe to our BREAKING NEWS newsletters

Oestreich and the other passenger warned Prokasky not to try and cross the river, with Oestreich alerting them that he couldn't swim, according to the complaint. 

Prokasky admitted to using methamphetamine with the other men on the day of the incident. 

He has been charged with two counts of criminal vehicular homicide, one count on the grounds of gross negligence and another count on the grounds of operating a vehicle while using a a controlled substance. 

Next Up

police lights

Three teens charged in Minneapolis robberies

The incidents took place on Saturday in Minneapolis.

covid-19, coronavirus, ppe

Here is Minnesota's COVID-19 update for Thursday, January 21

It's the first time in exactly four months that Minnesota has had fewer than 100 COVID patients in intensive care.

icy roads, bad roads

Girl, 16, killed in crash with semi on icy Minnesota road

The crash happened in Dodge County around 8 a.m. Wednesday.

police lights

Road rage incident sees driver punch out man's window, punch him in face

The incident happened in Waite Park Wednesday morning.

Screen Shot 2019-10-11 at 7.01.24 AM

Minneapolis will recover $100K in costs connected to 2019 Trump rally

The Target Center operator said it'll pay the costs over three years.

Jacob Frey

Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey confirms run for reelection

He has faced criticism over the city's response to George Floyd's death.

Kirk Cousins

Coller: How far away are the Vikings from playing championship weekend?

Matthew Coller writes a weekly Vikings column for BMTN, with more of his work found at Purple Insider.

ambulance

1 dead, 1 airlifted following head-on crash in Stearns County

A 48-year-old died and a 35-year-old suffered life-threatening injuries.

fire truck

1 person killed, another injured in fire at Hudson home

The amount of "combustible material" in the home made it difficult for firefighters.

nichole's fine pastry and cafe

Guy Fieri's visit to Fargo cafe for 'Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives' will air soon

Over the summer, Fieri visited several restaurants in the Fargo-Moorhead area.

EsQrv2rXYAMbPFa

2 dead in St. Paul shooting Thursday morning

A homicide investigation is underway.

Related

Diving rescue

Man dies, two escape after SUV found submerged in river

The driver has been arrested for criminal vehicular operation.

Screen Shot 2019-10-07 at 8.53.27 AM

Charges: Father, daughter married shortly after killing Minnesota man

The Minnesota man's remains were discovered in September.

Daniel A. Rodman

Charges: Driver was impaired when he fatally struck teen in Blaine

The 28-year-old Ramsey man is accused of mixing prescription drugs with alcohol and marijuana.

Da'Qwan Jones-Morris

Charges: Da'Qwan Jones-Morris was playing video game when fatally shot

The 17-year-old was shot dead in a St. Paul house on Wednesday, Nov. 6.

Evonne Sharkey

Woman charged in strangulation murder of St. Paul man

The woman told investigators that she was fighting off the man.

Charges: Man's wife died during 'death party'

The 58-year-old man removed his wife from a nursing home against expert advice.

Charges: Man stabbed friend to death while drunk, high

The killing happened Friday night at a Hopkins apartment.

Marvin and Kathy Fandrich

Charges: Motorcyclists died in crash caused by negligent farmer

The June 1 crash claimed the lives of high school sweethearts.