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Asian prescription drug figures in traffic crash

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Gazette staff
Wednesday, November 8, 2017

TOWN OF JANESVILLEA Janesville man has been charged with fifth-offense intoxicated driving after he allegedly took a drug that is prescribed in Asia but not the United States.

The arrest of Garret J. Nickel, 35, of 871 Sherman Ave., Janesville, came after a two-vehicle crash on Highway 14 between Rivers Edge Road and County E in the town of Janesville on Oct. 13, according to the criminal complaint.

Witnesses told sheriff's deputies that Nickel's car crossed the centerline suddenly and hit a truck nearly head-on.

Deputies found the prescription medication Etizolam in the car, and Nickel told them he took the drug but did not realize it would impair him, according to the complaint.

Etizolam is prescribed for anxiety and insomnia in India and Japan but typically is not prescribed in this country, according to the complaint.

Nickel said he thought someone was driving in his lane, so he swerved to avoid a crash, according to the complaint.

Nickel was treated and released at Mercyhealth Hospital and Trauma Center, Janesville.



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