The police report from an Aug. 26 two-vehicle accident that severed the legs of a Kansas University student from Derby states that both drivers involved were suspected of drunken driving by officers on the scene.
Cody Liston, 18, was standing behind a vehicle illegally parked in a driving lane in the 1600 block of Tennessee about 1:30 a.m. when a Ford Explorer driven by KU student Julian M. Kuszmaul, 21, Lawrence, struck and pinned Liston between the two vehicles. Both of Liston’s legs required amputation above the knee following the accident.
The responding officer “immediately observed a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage emanating from Kuszmaul’s mouth when he spoke,” and “also observed a strong odor of burnt marijuana from Kuszmaul’s clothing and vehicle,” according to the report. Though Kuszmaul told officers he slammed on the brakes as he approached the other car, police said they found no skid marks.
The driver of the vehicle Liston was behind, Derby resident Dustin A. Erickson, 21, also exhibited signs of alcohol impairment, according to the report. Both Erickson and Kuszmaul were given blood tests for alcohol, and the results are pending.
Neither was arrested at the scene, though Lawrence Police Sgt. Trent McKinley said it’s not unusual for police and prosecutors to wait for the test results before filing charges.
A search of Douglas County Court records shows Kuszmaul has received at least five speeding tickets since 2006.