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Driver jailed, several hurt after drug-related crash near auto show in Berrien Co.

WATERVLIET TOWNSHIP, Mich. — Three people are hospitalized, five others are hurt, and a man is in jail after a drug-related crash near an auto show.

The Berrien County Sheriff’s Office says it happened at the intersection of M 140 and Dan Smith Rd in Watervliet Township at 12:55 p.m. Saturday.

Lawrence Hamilton of Buchanan, Doris Hamilton, and Lawrence’s daughter Ashley Ferrell had just left Lane Automotive in a 1968 Pontiac GTO and were southbound on M 140. A Chrysler 300, carrying Jason Starampel of Breedsville and four other passengers, was westbound on Dan Smith Rd.

Deputies say the Chrysler pulled in front of the GTO, causing the crash. Lawrence and Ashley were taken to the hospital for leg and rub injuries, while Doris was airlifted for serious but non-life-threatening injuries. Starampel and his four passengers were treated at the scene for minor bumps and bruises.

Starampel was also found to be carrying narcotics at some point during the investigation. He has been booked at the Berrien County jail for charges including driving under the influence causing serious injury, possession of narcotics, and child endangerment.

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