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Driver faces OWI homicide charge for crash with buggy
The July 23 accident ejected a young Amish man and his 2-year-old brother from the buggy
Buggy vs. pickup crash Gratiot
Elmer K. Stoltzfus and his 2-year-old brother were thrown from this open-style buggy when the 2017 Dodge pickup truck rear-ended the buggy near Gratiot, according to the preliminary investigation. (Photo supplied by Lafayette County Sheriff's Office)

TOWN OF GRATIOT — A pickup truck driver was arrested after he rear-ended a buggy July 23 in Lafayette County, critically injuring a young Amish man and his 2-year-old brother.

The Amish man, Elmer K. Stoltzfus, 22, Gratiot, was airlifted to a Madison hospital but died at about 9 a.m. the next morning due to his "extensive" injuries from the crash, the Lafayette County Sheriff's Office reported.

His 2-year-old brother was also hospitalized for injuries, but survived.

The boy "was released from the hospital and returned home at approximately 4:30 a.m. the morning following the crash," Sheriff Reg Gill later wrote in an email to the Times.

When asked if the brothers' family needs any help from the greater community, Gill indicated that he wasn't yet aware of a need.

"The Amish are a very close-knit, reserved community that really take very good care of each other," Gill wrote.

Terry Allen Gensler, 50, Shullsburg, the driver of the 2017 Dodge pickup truck, was uninjured.

Gensler was arrested on a first-offense charge of operating while intoxicated causing injury and was cited for possession of open intoxicants in a motor vehicle. He had his blood drawn to determine levels of alcohol or other intoxicants in his blood, then was booked at the jail and later released.

Because Stoltzfus died, however, Gensler now tentatively faces a more serious, felony charge of homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle.

Terry Gensler
Terry Gensler, 50, Shullsburg, was arrested following the July 23 crash.

Gill said he was sure the Lafayette County District Attorney would be amending charges against Gensler before issuing a criminal complaint, but "obviously, we will have to wait for the results of the blood draw before that determination is made."

The accident happened at about 7:15 p.m. July 23 on Wisconsin 11 just west of Gratiot.

Stoltzfus was westbound in an open-style buggy and about to turn left into the driveway at 11263 Wis. 11 when Gensler's pickup truck struck the buggy from behind, according to the preliminary investigation by deputies.

The impact threw Stoltzfus and his brother from the buggy and killed the horse pulling their buggy. The buggy was "demolished," Gill reported, and the Dodge pickup was also severely damaged.

The crash shut down Wis. 11 for almost an hour. Deputies were assisted on scene by the Gratiot Fire Department, Gratiot First Response, the Darlington Fire Department, Green County EMS of Darlington, the Lafayette County Highway Department and Wisconsin State Patrol.

The State Patrol's accident reconstruction team is assisting in the ongoing investigation of the crash.

Wisconsin state court records show no prior criminal or traffic offenses for Gensler.