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Gregory man with 5 prior DUIs charged with manslaughter, faces life in prison after fatal crash

Suspect has 21 prior criminal convictions in South Dakota — including 5 DUIs — and was on probation at the time of the crash.

Alec Dostal
Alec Dostal, 54, of Gregory, was charged with first-degree manslaughter and DUI in connection with a crash in Dallas, S.D., that left one dead.
Photo courtesy of the Gregory County Sheriff's Office

DALLAS, S.D. — A Gregory man is facing serious charges after he allegedly caused an accident that left one dead.

Alec Dostal, 54, of Gregory, is currently being held in the Gregory County Jail on charges of first-degree manslaughter, DUI and more after he allegedly crashed into multiple vehicles and eventually rear-ended a utility vehicle, resulting in a fatality.

According to a report from the Gregory County Sheriff’s Office, authorities received a report shortly before noon Sunday that Dostal had hit a victim’s vehicle on the southern edge of town. The caller alleged Dostal was intoxicated and quickly left the scene after striking her car with his black Jeep. Minutes later, approximately two blocks to the north, another caller said a drunk driver in a gray Jeep was running into multiple vehicles in his front yard, and had turned north onto Main Street.

Nine minutes after the first two reports, a third report came in alleging Dostal had hit someone, and an ambulance was immediately needed near the intersection of Second Street and Foster Avenue. Two different callers advised authorities that the victim of the crash was already dead.

As first responders arrived on scene, court documents say Dostal was wandering the scene with blood on his hands and jeans. A sheriff’s deputy noticed a John Deere side-by-side laying on its side in the ditch, and observed the vehicle Dostal was reported to have been driving had sustained front-end damage.

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In a 10-page report, one deputy wrote he could see the victim’s body in the ditch, and it was obvious he had not survived the crash. Though the South Dakota Highway Patrol has not yet named the victim, pending family notification, the report identifies the victim as a 63-year-old male.

Authorities placed Dostal in cuffs, but Dostal said he hadn’t done anything and allegedly threatened to kill the arresting officer. The report says Dostal emitted an alcoholic odor, was slurring his words and had a tough time keeping his balance. An “erratic” Dostal attempted to shove officers off of him, but was eventually placed into the back of a squad car.

The arresting officer, who knew the victim personally, located a towel in the road, and placed it over the victim’s body, noting it was a gruesome scene. Traffic was shut down for multiple blocks in all directions, and the South Dakota Highway Patrol was contacted to conduct a reconstruction of the scene.

As police attempted to read Dostal his Miranda Rights, they allege he was screaming and banging his head against the vehicle’s interior. The report claims he threatened to kill the deputy and the deputy’s family. No interview was conducted as a result of Dostal’s behavior.

After a search warrant was obtained, Dostal was transported to a Gregory hospital for a blood draw. Authorities say he was “extremely combative,” and grabbed at the nurse while attempting to break hospital property. He allegedly threatened again to kill a deputy while screaming racial slurs at another.

Alec Dostal
Alec Dostal, 54, of Gregory, was booked into the Winner City Jail on Saturday, Feb. 5, 2022. He was charged with first-degree manslaughter and DUI in connection with a crash in Dallas, S.D., that left one dead.
Photo courtesy of the Gregory County Sheriff's Office

Three vials of Dostal’s blood were drawn for further testing, but a preliminary breath test taken approximately four hours after the crash resulted in a .144% blood alcohol content.

The day after Dostal was booked into the Winner City Jail, while going through Dostal’s belongings, an officer located a 9mm pistol that was fully loaded, as well as a partially loaded magazine. A check of the weapon’s serial number came back as unregistered.

Dostal was charged with first-degree manslaughter, driving under the influence, driving with a revoked license and failure to stop after an accident.

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If he’s convicted of first-degree manslaughter — a Class C felony — he could be sentenced to life in prison plus ordered to pay a $50,000 fine.

For the other counts, his criminal record could lead to harsher sentences. Dostal’s record includes 21 prior criminal convictions in South Dakota — five of which are prior DUIs.

South Dakota law only considers other DUIs in a 10-year period when enhancing sentences. Two prior DUI convictions in the last decade for Dostal would increase his charge to a Class 6 felony, resulting in a possible sentence of two years in prison instead of 30 days in jail.

Dostal appeared in a Gregory County courtroom Monday for an initial appearance. His next appearance has not yet been scheduled.

He’s currently being held without bond at the Winner City Jail.

A South Dakota native, Hunter joined Forum Communications Company as a reporter for the Mitchell (S.D.) Republic in June 2021 and now works as a digital reporter for Forum News Service, focusing on local news in Sioux Falls. He also writes regional news spanning across the Dakotas, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
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