ROSEMOUNT, Minn. - The driver of a truck carrying a 1,100-pound boulder that flew off the back, hitting and killing a mother and daughter in another vehicle has been charged in their deaths.
A criminal complaint states 33-year-old Joseph Paul Czeck, of Hastings, didn't stop at the scene after the boulder left his vehicle, killing the two women. He never contacted authorities about the crash and refused to give a statement to police, once arrested, according to the charges.
Czeck is charged with criminal vehicular homicide, including a count for leaving the scene.
Sixty-seven-year-old Karen Jean Christiansen and her 32-year-old daughter Jena Helene Christiansen, of Shoreview, were pronounced dead at the scene.
Surveillance video from nearby businesses shows Czeck's truck carrying the large, unsecured boulder while traveling south on Rich Valley Boulevard. After he crossed some railroad tracks, the boulder bounced out of the back of the truck.
The boulder bounced into the southbound lane, crossed the centerline and bounced into oncoming traffic where it hit the windshield of a vehicle driven by Karen Christiansen.
The criminal complaint states surveillance video shows Czeck pulling over his vehicle and parking in a driveway about eight-tenths of a mile down the road. The vehicle sits in the driveway for about two minutes and then the driver turns the truck around. The truck then stays in that location for five minutes and a person is seen walking around outside of the truck, according to the complaint.
The truck then pulls out and continues to head south on Rich Valley Boulevard.
A short distance later, the truck stops again and sits idle for about one to two minutes before proceeding again, the complaint states.
A witness told authorities that while the truck was parked, they saw a man outside the vehicle strapping a large boulder down in the back.
Surveillance video before the crash shows the truck carrying unstrapped boulders.
Investigators spoke with a contractor who confirmed they loaded a large boulder into a truck owned by Czeck on July 9.
He told police Czeck was supposed to come back that night around 5 p.m. to pick up more rocks but never showed up.
Police executed a search warrant at a residence in Inver Grove Heights, where Czeck was located inside. The truck believed to be involved in the crash was found at the residence, as well.