Man sentenced to work release for fatal crash that killed 2

A Roseville man was sentenced on Friday after being convicted of murder in connection with a double fatal crash in 2019, according to court records.

Fred Tamu Fonji, 49, was sentenced to two years of work release by the Dakota County court.

He also received two stayed sentences of over four years each, and 10 total years of probation.

In February, Fonji was convicted of two counts of criminal vehicular homicide and one count of careless driving in connection to the Oct. 17, 2019, crash that killed 48-year-old Colette Larae Craig and 47-year-old William Louis Craig of South St. Paul.

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The crash happened on Highway 55 near Doyle Path in Rosemount.

Charging documents state that Fonji was driving a dump truck that was behind a semi-truck. According to a witness, the semi was waiting to turn, but the dump truck never braked and, instead, swerved and hit one vehicle, then another, before stopping next to the semi. The witness said they had to veer into a ditch to avoid a head-on collision with the dump truck.

In the days after the crash, a landfill employee told a trooper that Fonji was always on his phone. Investigators analyzed his phones and saw that messages were received around the same time as the crash, but software limitations prevented investigators from determining if the messages were opened or viewed.