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Former Pelican Rapids school bus driver won't face charges after failing alcohol test

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news Detroit Lakes, 56501

Detroit Lakes Minnesota 511 Washington Avenue 56501

FERGUS FALLS, Minn. - The Otter Tail County attorney's office won't be filing charges against a former Pelican Rapids school bus driver who lost her job after failing a random alcohol test.

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The driver had worked for Christianson Bus Service Inc., which contracts with the Pelican Rapids Public School District to provide student transportation.

Company owner Jim Christianson said in February he dismissed a female driver after she failed an alcohol test administered by a private testing company.

The testing was done after the driver completed a morning bus route.

The matter was investigated by the Minnesota State Patrol, which submitted a report to Assistant Otter Tail County Attorney Heather Brandborg.

The report identifies the bus driver as Jane Ann Mullikin, 50.

According to the report, the tester, Jim Hovland, told State Patrol Sgt. Paul Davis that his breath test operator's certification lapsed in 2001 and he did not have it renewed because he could not find anyone in the area to recertify him.

"This meant he had been performing breath alcohol tests for the past seven plus years as an unqualified breath test operator," Davis wrote in his report.

According to the report, Mullikin was given two breath tests. One indicated a blood-alcohol content of 0.084 percent and the other provided a value of 0.079 percent.

Brandborg said because the person who tested Mullikin let his certification lapse, the test results cannot be used

as evidence.

She said had the tester's certification been up to date, she could have filed DWI charges based on the average of the two tests, 0.8 percent.

A message left for Mullikin at her home phone number was not returned.

Readers can reach Forum reporter Dave Olson at (701) 241-5555

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