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Truck driver charged with manslaughter in fatal North Dakota crash

GRAND FORKS - Manslaughter charges were filed Thursday, Dec. 6, against a South Dakota semitrailer driver for his role in a fiery crash that left one man dead.

Timothy Alan Mack, 53, of Castlewood, S.D., could spend up to 10 years in prison if convicted.

Mack was hauling cattle southbound in a 2000 Peterbilt semitrailer when he rear-ended a 1953 Ford pickup on Interstate 29 about 3 miles north of Thompson on May 23 around 6:35 p.m., according to a press release from the North Dakota Highway Patrol.

Court documents said the pickup, which was driven by Wayne Edward O’Connell, 57, of Shelley, Minn., was driving slower than Mack. An affidavit said Mack didn’t see the pickup before he hit the back of a trailer hitched to O’Connell’s pickup, which caused it to go airborne and explode into flames.

O’Connell was ejected from the vehicle and died at the scene, the patrol’s release said.

Mack was not injured, and all cattle survived the crash.

An investigation by the Highway Patrol and North Dakota Bureau of Criminal Investigations found Mack was not properly rested, which is a requirement of operating a commercial vehicle, the affidavit said.

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