, ,

Investigation Opened Into 122 MPH Crash Involving Marathon County Deputy

Drivers From Both Vehicles Released From Hospital


A two-vehicle crash involving a Marathon County squad car is under investigation. The sheriff’s deputy at the wheel was apparently going 122 mph.

The collision on Tuesday evening involved Marathon County Sheriff’s Deputy Michael Van Offeren, and is being investigated by the Wausau Police Department. According to the department’s statement, Van Offeren was responding to a crash on Highway 107, near the city of Marathon, with his lights and siren on, when an SUV pulled in front of him. The squad car video indicates that the deputy was travelling at 122 mph.

The footage stops just before the crash, which may be due to the impact.

Stay informed on the latest news

Sign up for WPR’s email newsletter.

This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.

Wausau Police Department Capt. Ben Bliven said the investigation will look at whether high speed was justified, whether the other driver was at fault, and other factors.

“The weather conditions, the road conditions, what time of day is it, how much traffic is on the roadway, how familiar is the officer with the roadway,” said Bliven.

The driver of the SUV was hospitalized for two days. Deputy Van Offeren was treated for injuries and released the night of the crash. He has been with the Marathon County Sheriff’s Department since March of this year.

The results of the investigation, when completed, will be turned over to the Marathon County district attorney.