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Deputies with the Racine County Sheriff’s Department arrested an Eau Claire man at 11 a.m. Sunday on Interstate 41 for suspicion of driving drunk with the children and his wife in the car.

Max Hagen, 35, is facing:

  • Two counts reckless of endangering safety
  • Six counts felony bail jumping
  • Two counts operating under the influence with passengers under 16Drivingg under the influence 3rd
  • Traffic citations included – speeding on the freeway, operating while suspended, violation of child safety restraints, vehicle operator fail to wear a seatbelt, and fail to obey traffic officer signal/order

According to a press release, deputies conducted a traffic stop after seeing Hagan driving 97 mph in a 70 mph zone. During the apprehension, the deputy clocked Hagan going 103 mph, before he stopped for the deputy.

“While speaking to Hagen, the Deputy could smell a strong odor of intoxicants coming from his person,” the press release reads. “Also in the vehicle were a 1-year-old and 3-year-old child, the 33year old mother of both children, and a 17-year-old. The 3-year-old was also not properly secured in a child seat. Hagen is the father of the 1-year-old.”

During the investigation, Hagan refused to submit to sobriety testing. Still, the deputy arrested him for suspicion of drunk driving. He also admitted to drinking two bottles of vodka in the morning and told deputies that he drinks “anywhere from 5 to 8 bottles of vodka daily and will start to withdraw if he does not have alcohol within nine hours.”

Hagan drove despite having a suspended license. While conducting a criminal background check, deputies noted that he had two prior drunk driving arrests, was on probation for felony possession of methamphetamines and was on bond for a case in Rusk County. The last case involved his wife, which prohibited Hagan from drinking and contacting her and their children.

Following the arrest, deputies took Hagan into custody at the Racine County Jail. Charges have been referred to the Racine County District Attorney’s Office but have not officially been filed.

Sheriff issues warning about driving drunk

Racine County Sheriff Christopher Schmaling noted that this was the 6th drunk driving arrest made by the department since Friday.

“One of which was a factor that resulted in a minor injury accident,” Schmaling said. “The Sheriff’s Office would like to remind everyone to enjoy the time with your friends and family in a safe and responsible manner.”

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