An Illinois man accused of driving intoxicated through Beloit’s Grand Lighted Holiday Parade on Nov. 29 was inches away from mowing down several children and adults, according to a criminal complaint filed in Rock County Court.
Police arrested Curtis L. Metz, 38, of Orangeville, Illinois, after a pursuit through Beloit and into South Beloit, Illinois.
He is charged with fifth-offense intoxicated driving, attempting to flee or elude an officer and five counts of first-degree recklessly endangering safety, according to the complaint filed Wednesday.
In interviews with police, multiple families reported that Metz had come within “two to six” and “two to three” inches of hitting children who were watching the parade, the complaint said.
One witness in the 400 block of East Grand Avenue said he had to grab his 4-year-old daughter to make sure she did not get hit, according to the complaint.
A woman who was with three small children said they were so close to the truck that the driver “ran over the bucket they were using to collect candy,” according to the complaint.
“(The woman) stated her grandson was terrified,” the complaint reads. “He kept repeating that he almost got killed.”
A man who was walking in costume in the parade with his daughter and two other children told police he saw the truck near the intersection of Grand Avenue and Pleasant Street. He said he grabbed his daughter by the hood and pushed the girls to the side near a parade float, according to the complaint.
The truck came so close to him that it struck his costume, but he was not injured, according to the complaint.
Metz is currently in custody at the Winnebago County Jail in Rockford, Illinois, and awaits extradition to Wisconsin, the Beloit Police Department said.
An extradition date has yet to be determined, said Sarah Millard, Beloit strategic communications director.
Metz also faces criminal charges in Illinois, Millard said.
Court records show Metz was convicted of his fourth intoxicated-driving charge in September 2014. In 2001 he was convicted of fleeing or eluding an officer, and in 2007 he was convicted of possession with intent to deliver less than 200 grams of marijuana.