Police await blood results in I-229 wrong-way fatality crash

May 20—St. Joseph police are continuing to gather information in the wake of a wrong-way crash that claimed the life of one St. Joseph man Friday.

Sgt. James Tonn with the St. Joseph Police Department said police have finished their investigation into the crash and are awaiting blood results from the driver who crashed head-on with Ryan Coffman midway through an Interstate 229 exit ramp early Friday morning.

"It could take a while for the results," Tonn told News-Press NOW.

Coffman, a St. Joseph resident, was attempting to exit I-229 onto Edmond Street around 5 a.m. Friday when he was struck by a Honda CRV heading the wrong direction on the ramp. Coffman was transported to Mosaic Life Care and later pronounced dead.

At this time, police said they have no reason to believe either vehicle was traveling at an excessive rate of speed. However, information stored in the car's event data recorder, similar to a black box in planes, is being reviewed to confirm.

Police are awaiting results from a blood test of the driver and the event data recorder before deciding to pursue specific charges, which partially contributed to the decision not to arrest the driver at the scene.

"There was nothing on scene for us to say this person needs to be in custody right now," Tonn said.

Since police had no suspicions of the driver at the scene and would have had to await further test results, the driver would have been released after 24 hours in custody.