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Tractor accident civil suit dismissed

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By Stephen Lega

A civil lawsuit filed over a tractor accident that occurred the day of the Warrior Dash in 2012 has been dismissed.
On Jan. 9, Marion Circuit Judge Dan Kelly signed an order dismissing the case and reaching a payment settlement on behalf of a minor.
The accident occurred June 23, 2012. Steven Baudendistel of 1190 Popes Creek Road was driving a tractor that was pulling a trailer carrying several passengers who had left the site of the Warrior Dash obstacle race.
After the accident, Baudendistel was arrested on 17 counts of first-degree wanton endangerment, driving under the influence and leaving the scene of an accident. The arrest report noted that Baudendistel had a strong odor of alcohol, had bloodshot eyes, was unsteady on his feet and failed all field sobriety tests. At the time of his arrest, Baudendistel told the arresting officer that he was trying to be nice and give people a ride from the race site to their vehicles when he lost control of the tractor.
He later pled guilty to one count of second-degree wanton endangerment. The remaining charges were dismissed.
Four separate civil complaints were filed by passengers who were on the trailer during the accident, but those complaints were later combined into one case.
In the Jan. 9 orders, Baudendistel agreed to a $3,500 settlement on behalf of Amelia Linde, a child who was riding on the trailer with her parents. The rest of the claims were dismissed.