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The original item was published from 9/3/2020 1:22:00 PM to 9/3/2020 1:35:23 PM.

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Posted on: September 3, 2020

[ARCHIVED] Red Wing Liberty’s Restaurant Suffers Damage

Image of car covered in bricks and rubble from crashing into Libertys restaraunt

Contact: Laura Blair Johnson
Public Information Officer/
Administrative Services Director


On September 2, 2020, at approximately 9:43 p.m., Red Wing Police Department Officers were dispatched to a “remove an unwanted person” call in the 700 Block of 21st St. A responding Officer met an SUV traveling northbound on Bush St., passing 10th St. where the road turns from Bush to Plum St. The Officer made a U-turn on Bush and witnessed the suspect vehicle drive through the stop sign at 7th and Plum at a high rate of speed. The Officer approached 7thth and Plum and observed the suspect vehicle drive through the stop sign at 4th and Plum at high speed and turn left onto 3rd. Upon entering the 400 Block of Plum, the Police Officer saw a large dust cloud with debris near the intersection of 3rd and Plum. The suspect was crawling out of the vehicle’s window, which had debris and bricks on the top. The suspect was taken into custody and identified as Donovan Plank, age 28 of Red Wing, Minnesota. Officers detected an odor of alcohol emitting from Mr. Plank.

Red Wing Fire Department Paramedics treated one person at the scene, who was later cleared for transport by the Police Department to Mayo Clinic Health Systems-Red Wing for further treatment/assessment. Once MCHS-RW medical personnel cleared the person, he was transported to the Goodhue County Adult Detention Center and booked in on the following citations: 1st Degree Criminal Damage to Property and 3rd Degree Driving while impaired.

The Red Wing Fire Department performed an initial search of the affected building, including the second story apartments. All occupants were accounted for and unharmed. The Red Cross assisted four of the five occupants.

The Red Wing Police and Fire Departments established a collapse zone in the likelihood of a secondary collapse, and escorted bystanders from the immediate area.

In accordance with MN State Building Code, the City of Red Wing Building Inspector condemned the building due to structural damages. Xcel Energy disconnected services. A structural engineer will analyze the building for repair, rehabilitation, or demolition.

Red Wing Public Works placed barricades to block off Plum and 3rd. and will place fencing around the impacted area today. MN Department of Transportation closed sections of Hwy 58 & 63, diverting traffic around the scene.

Red Wing Police and Fire Departments were assisted on scene by Goodhue County Sheriff’s Office, City of Goodhue Police Department, Red Wing Public Works, City of Red Wing Building Inspections, MN State Patrol, MN DOT, Xcel Energy, and Goodhue County Dispatch. Lake City Ambulance provided coverage at Fire Station 1.

Mayor Dowse and the Red Wing City Council thanks all agencies for responding immediately to a potentially catastrophic situation by quickly evacuating the building’s residents and employees, and apprehending the suspected offender. Mayor Dowse said, “Liberty’s Restaurant is a Red Wing landmark. The City of Red Wing will do all it can to ensure that this legacy restaurant will be back in business as soon as possible.” 

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