Stargazing, drinking results in DUI arrest |

Stargazing, drinking results in DUI arrest

— Law enforcement sorted through a flurry of misinformation while responding to a crash Wednesday night that ultimately resulted in a DUI arrest.

First, police were told to respond to the county road leading to the Strawberry Park Hot Springs, where there was a crash with someone pinned between a car and a tree.

A person who was not at the crash reported it.

Police then learned the crash was on Buffalo Pass, but they could not immediately find it.

“We had a lot of bad info upfront,” Colorado State Patrol Sgt. Scott Elliott said. “The biggest factor was we didn’t know where it was.”

After talking to some hunters on Buffalo Pass, police were able to find the crash a couple of miles past Dry Lake.

A trooper spoke to a man, Andrew J. Hucke, 30, at the scene. He had abrasions to his head and a shoulder injury.

Hucke said he was a passenger in the car and that the driver and other passenger were no longer at the scene.

According to an arrest affidavit, Hucke smelled like alcohol, and he was not supposed to be driving because of an alcohol offense.

Steamboat police contacted the two other people in the car in town. Elliott did not know how they got to Steamboat after the crash.

The two people said that Hucke had been driving the car and that the car was stolen. Police later learned this was not true, and the two passengers were cited for false reporting.

The passengers told police they had been drinking Pabst Blue Ribbon beer and Canadian Mist whiskey. They had also been smoking marijuana while looking at the stars.

One of the passengers was treated for shoulder and neck injuries.

Hucke was arrested on suspicion of DUI, not wearing a seat belt, careless driving causing injury, driving under restraint and violation of a protection order.

To reach Matt Stensland, call 970-871-4247, email or follow him on Twitter @SBTStensland

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