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macemonA man driving a SUV that fatally killed a 13-year-old Caledonia girl on Sunday, Aug. 9 was charged Tuesday, Aug. 11 with two felonies in Racine County Felony Court.

Thomas Macemon, 34, of Caledonia, was charged by the Racine County District Attorney’s Office with homicide by negligent operation of a vehicle and homicide by vehicle-use of controlled substance.

Sara Dresen, 13, of Caledonia, was jogging southbound at about 5:50 p.m. Sunday, Aug. 9 on the west side of Middle Road near 5 1/2 Mile Road when a 34-year-old Caledonia man driving a SUV crossed the center line, struck Sara, and hit a utility pole. She died at the scene.

If convicted of both charges, Macemon faces up to 35 years in prison and/or fined up to $125,000. Macemon, who appeared via a closed circuit television, never looked up as Racine County Court Commissioner Alice Rudebusch set Macemon’s bond for $250,000.

Dr. Brian Peterson, of the Milwaukee County Medical Examiner’s Office, conducted the autopsy. He ruled that the cause of Dresen’s death was closed head injury/blunt force trauma to the head as result of being struck by the SUV.

Racine County District Attorney Rich Chiapete called the case “senseless and heartbreaking” as he pointed out to the court that Macemon had consumed Hennessey cognac, ingested a crushed up Xanax pill and snorted it, and smoked marijuana.

Erin Larsen, Macemon’s attorney, took issue with Chiapete asking for a $250,000 bond saying that Macemon works part-time at K-Mart and he could not afford to pay the bond. She requested that Rudebusch set a more reasonable amount since Macemon didn’t flee the scene and was cooperative with police, but Rudebusch denied the request saying that the amount was reasonable.

Macemon is expected to have a preliminary hearing at8:30 a.m. Aug 20 in front of Racine County Court Commissioner Alice Rudebusch.

Larsen, Chiapete, and family members declined to comment on the case.

Denise Lockwood has an extensive background in traditional and non-traditional media. She has written for, the Milwaukee Business Journal, Milwaukee Magazine and the Kenosha News.