Wednesday, November 24, 2010

No charges to be filed in fatal crash

Prosecutor determines ‘lack of criminal intent’


By TERRY SMITH
Express Staff Writer

The Blaine County Prosecuting Attorney's Office stated Tuesday it will not file criminal charges in connection with a fatal traffic accident last month on U.S. Highway 20 about two miles west of Timmerman Junction.

Prosecuting Attorney Jim Thomas reviewed investigative reports submitted by the Blaine County Sheriff's Office following the two-vehicle collision on the morning of Oct. 26 that claimed the life of 15-year-old Austin Hennefer, a sophomore at Carey School.

"Although there may be a myriad of civil liability issues from this accident, I do not believe that criminal charges are warranted against any of the parties involved given the circumstances of this tragic occurrence and the lack of criminal intent," Thomas wrote in a statement to the Idaho Mountain Express.

The Sheriff's Office determined that the accident occurred on an icy roadway when Hennefer, driving a Carey School driver-education vehicle, was making an "illegal unsafe turn" in the middle of the highway. The vehicle was struck by a car driven by Sergio Lopez-Rodriguez, 45, of Gooding.

Terry Smith: tsmith@mtexpress.com




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