Beaver Dam Man Sentenced To 21+ Years
Dustin Vandergalien, 36, Beaver Dam, was sentenced by Dodge County Circuit Court Judge Martin J. De Vries to 21.5 years in prison and 19 years of extended supervision for Homicide by Vehicle – Use of Controlled Substance 2nd or subsequent offense, Use of a Vehicle with Controlled Substance in Blood Causing Great Bodily Harm and Operate with a Detectable Amount of Restricted Controlled Substance in Blood Causing Injury as a 2nd or subsequent offense.
On July 30, 2019, Dustin Vandergailen was operating his vehicle eastbound in the westbound lane of County Road E passing another vehicle into oncoming traffic. The Wisconsin State Patrol conducted a crash reconstruction in the process of investigating the crash. Examination of the electronic data module from the defendant’s vehicle revealed that Vandergailen remained in the lane for an extended period of time at a speed of 77mph, and made no effort to avoid the oncoming vehicles or break. The driver of the first vehicle struck took evasive action that limited the first impact. Still her vehicle was knocked from the roadway injuring her and two passengers. The crash investigation also revealed that the second vehicle was 38 feet behind the first and Vandergailen struck that vehicle squarely. The second crash killed the front passenger of that vehicle as well as causing severe injuries to the driver and multiple injuries to the rear seat passengers.
One witness explained that the defendant had been driving erratically for miles before reaching the crash, and after passing her vehicle, remained in the oncoming lane of traffic for an extended period of time causing the crash. Vandergailen’s blood results showed a metabolite of cocaine and that he had been drinking before the crash. Vandergailen has two previous convictions for Operating While Intoxicated.
District Attorney Kurt Klomberg stated at sentencing, “The defendant did not just engage in a failed passing maneuver. He had the sun to his rear, no obstructions in his view and the visibility on this flat, straight stretch of highway is among the best in the county. He had to see the vehicles coming, yet remained in their lane for nearly the lengths of two football fields, possibly more. The defendant’s behavior was reckless and showed utter disregard for human life.”