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Archive for Thursday, September 20, 2012

Trial ordered in fatal collision

September 20, 2012

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A 23-year-old Overland Park man was ordered Thursday by Douglas County District Judge Michael Malone to stand trial on a charge of involuntary manslaughter in the death of a 19-year-old Lawrence woman in a 2010 vehicle collision.

Sean Barrett Walker’s blood-alcohol content was 0.23, nearly three times the state’s legal limit, two hours after the collision on Oct. 14, 2010, at the intersection of Clinton Parkway and Inverness Drive, according to a police officer who testified at a preliminary hearing Thursday. Walker’s westbound vehicle struck a southbound car driven by Mary Grace Paez, a 2010 Lawrence High School graduate, according to police. Paez died at the scene.

The police report also lists Walker’s speeding as contributing to the crash. He was headed west on Clinton Parkway and entered the intersection on a flashing yellow light. Paez was headed south on Inverness Drive and entered the intersection after stopping at a flashing red light. Walker’s Jeep struck Paez’s car on the driver’s side. The law that covers flashing yellow lights says drivers may proceed through an intersection “only with caution.”

Walker was traveling at least 11 mph faster than the 45 mph speed limit on Clinton Parkway, and Paez was driving 13 mph in the 30 mph zone, according to the accident report. Paez’s toxicology test in her autopsy was negative for alcohol or drugs.

If convicted of involuntary manslaughter, Walker faces a sentence of 38 months to 14 years in prison. Walker’s trial is set for Feb. 4.

Earlier this month a judge approved a $100,000 settlement for Paez’s parents in a civil lawsuit against Walker.

Comments

Steve Jacob 2 years, 3 months ago

Glad the DA is finally using "involuntary manslaughter", when a drunk driver kills a proven non-drunk driver, no reason not to go all the way. But wonder why it took so long to charge in what looks like an easy conviction. Not saying he's going to get the full 14 years, but even 3-5 is much more then people seem to get.

kernal 2 years, 3 months ago

There has been a lot of talk the past few years about the KBI labs being severely backklogged and understaffed. Since the D.A. had to wait for the tests and evidence to come back from the KBI and then review it, that's probably the main reason for the delay.

With all the cutbacks and the worst recession since the Great Depression, that's what happens, aka you get what you pay for.

Topple 2 years, 3 months ago

Drunk driver knowingly gets into a vehicle and ends up killing someone. 38 months? You must be joking. He snuffed out someones life and three years is on the board...

John Hamm 2 years, 3 months ago

That's 'S'Normal for Kansas. His second big mistake was not leaving the scene. Most of them do then turn themselves in later. Law can't prove how drunk they were at time of accident.

sleepy33 2 years, 3 months ago

I don't think it's 'running a red light' if you stop at the flashing red and then proceed. Regardless, anytime you hit another vehicle, you bear some responsibility for the accident, period. What if her car had been stalled in the middle of the intersection? What if she'd had to stop for an oncoming pedestrian? Anyone who's ever gotten a ticket for inattentive driving or tailgating after hitting someone who pulled out right in front of them or suddenly turned without signalling will tell you that you will still bear some fault even if the other driver was also violating the rules. You're always supposed to operate your vehicle in such a manner and speed that you are able to avoid hitting other cars.

SouthWestKs 2 years, 3 months ago

LarryNative,

If you are speeding you loose the right-of-way, period.. Enjoy the cool weather..

SouthWestKs 2 years, 2 months ago

oletimer,

You need to reread the article again.. It said that she stopped & then proceeded into the intersection.. Do to the fact that the other driver was speeding & should have been going 11 miles per hour slower, she thought that she could get through the intersection OK.. I will say it again-If you speed you loose the "right-of -way"!! Enjoy the cool weather..

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