Man accused in pursuit while drunk, which led to fiery crash pleads guilty

Oleksiy Raldukhin

MILWAUKEE -- A man accused of leading police on a chase down I-43 while drunk, causing a fiery crash near 8th and Locust in Milwaukee in November of 017 has reached a plea deal in the case against him.

Oleksiy Raldukhin, 30, of Greenfield, on Monday, April 30 pleaded guilty to two charges -- first degree recklessly endangering safety, and OWI, causing injury (2nd+ offense). Three other charges were dismissed as a result of the plea deal.

Raldukhin will be sentenced on May 14.

According to a criminal complaint, this began around 1 p.m. on Nov. 15, 2017, when River Hills police received a report of a reckless driver/road rage incident in River Hills, near Brown Deer and Regent. A caller indicated a black Ramp pickup truck was swerving into his lane in an effort to strike his car -- something the suspect vehicle did "several times," the caller said. The caller said the pickup, at one point, stopped in front of his vehicle and then reversed quickly, stopping just short of striking his car. At one point, the caller said the pickup pulled up next to his vehicle and the driver "just stared at him." This, as his 8-year-old daughter was in the car, crying.

Fiery crash at 8th and Locust

Fiery crash at 8th and Locust

Brown Deer police soon learned the pickup had struck a sign at 54th and Brown Deer, before fleeing the scene. Another sign was struck at Arbon and Brown Deer, and debris was strewn in the roadway.

Fiery crash at 8th and Locust

Another caller notified police that the pickup was headed eastbound on Brown Deer -- running red lights as it headed towards I-43.

A Brown Deer officer observed the suspect vehicle traveling at a high rate of speed on Brown Deer Road, and a traffic stop was initiated. The complaint says the pickup truck did not stop -- conducting two U-turns on Brown Deer before entering I-43.

On the freeway, the complaint indicates the pickup was passing vehicles in the distress lane at a high rate of speed as the Brown Deer officer pursued it. The pursuit was terminated near Good Hope due to the high rate of speed, dangerous driving and traffic on the freeway.

Fiery crash at 8th and Locust

Glendale police got set up on the freeway in an effort to stop the truck. The complaint indicates the truck didn't stop for Glendale police, despite the deployment of a stop stick, which it drove over.

An officer joined the pursuit after the pickup passed her vehicle on the freeway at Hampton. The complaint says the truck was traveling in excess of 75 miles-per-hour -- swerving in and out of all three lanes of traffic. The officer noticed the front tire had begun disintegrating, and the vehicle exited 43 with officers in pursuit at Locust.

Near 8th and Locust, the pickup collided with another vehicle -- causing severe damage to the driver's side of the victim's vehicle. The truck then struck a fire hydrant and light pole, and the traffic control signal sparked, causing a fire forming a path of 50 feet to where the truck came to rest. The pickup crashed at the on-ramp to I-43 and quickly ignited.


The complaint says the driver was seen exiting the truck and running towards a yard. He was pursued by an officer in her squad as he tried to climb a fence and fell. He then ran into an alley, where he was quickly apprehended.

Investigators found the driver, identified as Raldukhin, had an odor of alcohol coming from him, along with glassy eyes and poor balance, the complaint says. His hair was found to be singed from the fire.

Oleksiy Raldukhin

Prosecutors say he admitted to drinking "an unknown amount of wine and beer and shots of vodka." The complaint says he performed poorly during field sobriety tests and a preliminary breath test revealed a reading of .225.

The victim whose vehicle was struck by the pickup was taken to the hospital for treatment of multiple cuts and abrasions suffered during the crash. She said her vehicle spun several times as a result of the impact of the crash.

Raldukhin was taken to the hospital for a blood sample.

A criminal complaint notes previous OWI convictions occurring in Milwaukee County in 2010 and 2015. Prosecutors say he was out on bail in a Crawford County case for OWI third offense from an incident on Oct. 1, 2017.

Cash bond was set at $500 in the Crawford County case on Oct. 2, 2017. He was ordered not to possess or consume any alcoholic beverages, and advised that he could not enter any taverns. He was required to submit to random preliminary breath testing at the request of law enforcement.