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Bemidji man serves 213 days for killing a man

BEMIDJI -- In the early morning hours on July 31 a man was killed in a hit and run accident. The man behind the wheel was sentenced in Beltrami County District Court Monday.

Martin Erwin Ubert, 58, of Bemidji was sentenced for felony criminal vehicular homicide and leaving the scene of an accident he caused to 13 months in the Minnesota Correctional Facility in St. Cloud. His prison time has been stayed for four years.

Ubert was ordered to serve 213 days local confinement in the Beltrami County Jail and has been credited for 213 days time served. He has been placed on four years supervised probation and must pay a $1,500 fine plus $404 in restitution.

On July 31, Ubert and his girlfriend were leaving the Red Lake Casino at about 3 a.m. He was driving south on Highway 89 and east on Grange Road Northeast in his Monte Carlo, according to court documents.

Ubert struck and killed Christopher Lee Strong, 25, with his car that morning.

The criminal complaint stated there was evidence that Ubert turned his car around and drove past Strong’s body after striking the man, who Ubert said thought was a bear. Ubert did not check Strong for signs of life and did not call law enforcement although his girlfriend had a cell phone with in the car. The complaint also stated Ubert had used methamphetamine five days prior to the incident. Ubert was on probation for refusing a breathalyzer test after hitting a woman’s horse with his car in February 2013, according to Pioneer archives.

It was a Pioneer newspaper carrier who found Strong’s body at about 4:30 a.m. on July 31 near the intersection of Grange and Nature Roads Northeast.

Crystal Dey
Crystal Dey covers crime, courts, tribal relations and social issues for The Bemidji Pioneer in Bemidji, Minnesota. Originally from Minnesota’s Iron Range, Dey has worked for the Echo Press in Alexandria, Minnesota, The Forum in Fargo, North Dakota, The Tampa Tribune in Tampa, Florida, the Hartford Courant in Hartford and West Hartford News in West Hartford, Connecticut. Dey studied Mass Communications at Minnesota State University Moorhead with an emphasis in Online Journalism. Follow Crystal Dey on Twitter @Crystal_Dey.
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