{{featured_button_text}}

An irate Justice of the Peace Karen Orzech doubled the requested bail - to $100,000 - for a man accused of rolling his car in a crash that saw a passenger's arm nearly severed, and then brandishing a syringe at a Highway Patrol trooper and shouting that he had AIDS and hepatitis C.

"You are not going to be walking around in this community or driving in this community, period," Orzech told Wayne Dale Munnell on Tuesday.

Munnell, 33, of Lolo, faces a raft of felony and misdemeanor charges following the rollover late Sunday morning on Highway 93 South near the Buckhouse Bridge.

A witness, Kellen James Havranek, told the Montana Highway Patrol that he first saw a blue Kia driven by Munnell when it darted onto Brooks Street from a side street, going through a stop sign in the process. The Kia then traveled southwest on Brooks, weaving back and forth into oncoming traffic, and cutting off several cars, according to an affidavit filed in the case.

Havranek estimated the Kia was going 65 miles per hour when it passed Reserve Street. As Havranek prepared to dial 9-1-1, the car went off the road and rolled. He stopped his own car and ran to the Kia, encountering two children and an unresponsive man lying on the ground. The Kia then righted itself and a teenager and a man who had been driving crawled out.

When Trooper Andrew Novak arrived, he noted that Munnell's "breath smelled of an alcoholic beverage, and there was an odor of burnt marijuana on his clothing," the affidavit said. Munnell carried a medical marijuana card.

"Munnell yelled at Trooper Novak and made statements about how the ACLU was going to love this," and told him "I got AIDS, dude, and a swollen temple," according to the affidavit.

At Community Medical Center, Munnell cursed the staff, called a nurse "bitch," and at one point during a blood draw "leapt from the cot and grabbed the bloodstained needle and syringe used to draw blood from him," and brandished the needle at Novak, the affidivait said.

A preliminary breath test measured Munnell's alcohol level at 0.149. The legal limit is 0.08.

On his way out of the hospital, Munnell reportedly threw himself from a wheelchair and kicked a mobile computer work station.

*******

One of the passengers in the Kia, 24-year-old Ronnie Michael Moss, was unconscious and his arm nearly severed, the affidavit said. St. Patrick Hospital did not return telephone calls seeking information on his condition Tuesday.

Jerray Eugene Rowland, a 16-year-old passenger, sustained minor injuries; Jerral Lee Rowland, 6, suffered serious injuries to his face, head and ankle; and Laraya Rose Rowland, 4, had a possible neck injury, the affidavit said.

None of those passengers remained hospitalized on Tuesday. There were no child safety seats in the Kia, according to the affidavit.

Munnell is charged with four counts of criminal endangerment, a felony punishable by 10 years in the Montana State Prison and/or a $50,000 fine; as well as misdemeanor charges of assault, criminal mischief, disorderly conduct, driving while his license was suspended or revoked, and a second offense of failure to carry proof of insurance.

In August, he was charged with driving under the influence, a first offense, and as a consequence was ordered not to drink or drive.

Assistant public defender Ed Parker told Orzech on Tuesday that Munnell's medical conditions require "constant maintenance" by a doctor, not a nurse.

Deputy Missoula County Attorney Jennifer Clark said his health problem "doesn't give him the right to ignore a court order or endanger the community."

Orzech also ordered a pretrial screening and set a preliminary hearing for Jan. 11.

Missoulian reporter Gwen Florio can be reached at 523-5268, gwen.florio@missoulian.com or CopsAndCourts.com.

 

Get local news delivered to your inbox!

* I understand and agree that registration on or use of this site constitutes agreement to its user agreement and privacy policy.
You must be logged in to react.
Click any reaction to login.
0
0
0
0
0