Complaint: Paramedic said man charged in Whitney Way crash that killed mother ‘smelled like a distillery’

Thomas Monson
Thomas Monson mugshot courtesy: Dane County Jail.

MADISON, Wis. — An Edgerton man charged with killing his mother in a drunk driving crash on Madison’s west side last month “smelled like a distillery” and needed help to walk to a nearby ambulance after the crash, according to first responders who responded to the scene.

Thomas Monson, 57, faces charges of homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle, eighth-offense operating while under the influence and operating a vehicle while suspended causing death stemming from the early morning crash on Whitney Way near Endeavor Lane on April 28. Monson’s 84-year-old mother died at UW Hospital two hours after the crash from “blunt force trauma of the torso, bilateral upper extremities, and right lower extremity,” according to a criminal complaint.

RELATED: Driver in fatal Whitney Way crash arrested, faces homicide charge for mother’s death

The complaint alleges surveillance video from Exact Sciences showed the vehicle Monson was driving, a Pontiac Vibe, heading west on Endeavor Lane slowly — as if lost — just after 2:07 a.m. Video then shows the vehicle backing up onto a curb before “taking off fairly quickly” back to the east on Endeavor Lane, running a stop sign at Whitney Way and jumping curbs before slamming into a tree.

In the complaint, first responders at the scene described Monson as needing help from paramedics to walk without falling. He reportedly admitted to having at least two alcoholic beverages to drink.

After being hospitalized, Monson’s speech when talking to medical staff was “slurred and quiet,” and he appeared to be struggling to stay awake, the complaint alleges.

According to the complaint, Monson’s license to drive was suspended two months prior to the crash.

During an initial appearance Monday afternoon, the court set a $50,000 cash bond in the case, online court records show.

Jail records show he remains in the Dane County Jail as of Tuesday afternoon.

A status conference is scheduled for August 1.