Hennepin Co. Attorney Reviews Deadly Lake Minnetonka Crash

Posted at: 01/29/2013 3:46 PM
Updated at: 01/29/2013 7:13 PM
By: Maricella Miranda

The Hennepin County Attorney's Office is considering possible charges against a father who drove into Lake Minnetonka last week, killing his 8-month-old daughter. 

Jonathan Markle, of Minnetrista, was driving his family's SUV when it broke through the ice below Halstead Bay Bridge along County Road 44 in Minnetrista just after 5 p.m. Jan. 18.

His wife, Amanda, 2-year-old daughter, Isabelle, and 8-month-old daughter, Tabitha, were also in the vehicle.

A Mound firefighter who lives near the bridge and a friend helped Amanda and Isabelle out of the water.

Jonathan Markle tried unsuccessfully to rescue Tabitha, who was strapped in the backseat of the submerged vehicle.

Tabitha died from drowning and her death has been ruled accidental, according to the Hennepin County Medical Examiner's Office. She was underwater for 15 to 20 minutes.

The other family members were also treated and released from the hospital.

Hennepin County and Orono police are investigating whether alcohol was involved in the accident. Authorities on Tuesday refused to elaborate on those test rests.

As of Tuesday, no one has been arrested involving the crash.

The Hennepin County Attorney's Office began reviewing the case Monday for possible charges against Jonathan Markle, a county attorney spokesman said. It could take weeks to decide on whether to pursue any charges, he added.

Attempts to reach the family's attorney were unsuccessful Tuesday.