Woman Pleads Not Guilty for Fatal Rollover Crash in Racine County
Overview of the Case
Kristi Lichtenwalner, a 36-year-old woman, was arraigned in Racine County Circuit Court on Wednesday for charges related to a fatal rollover crash that took place on October 2, 2022. According to the criminal complaint, Lichtenwalner was accused of being drunk and behind the wheel during the crash that killed a male passenger and injured herself and another female passenger. She pleaded not guilty to the charges of homicide by intoxicant use of a vehicle, OWI fourth offense, and operating a motor vehicle with a prohibited concentration of alcohol – fourth offense.
Details of the Crash
Deputies from the Racine County Sheriff’s Office responded to the area near the intersection of Durand Avenue and 67th Street on the report of a rollover crash. They found an SUV on its roof in a ditch and the owner of the SUV was dead at the scene while two females were taken to the hospital with injuries. Lichtenwalner was interviewed at the hospital and her speech was slurred and she smelled of alcohol. She claimed the male owner of the SUV was driving at the time of the accident and had been “drinking quite a lot.” However, a witness reported seeing the male owner and Lichtenwalner trade places, which put Lichtenwalner behind the wheel.
Evidence Found During Investigation
Investigators examining the vehicle recovered a long strand of hair embedded in the shattered area of the driver-side window and found blood splatters on the driver airbag, which was later sent off for DNA analysis. The results of the DNA test showed a match for Lichtenwalner. During their search of the SUV, investigators also found a woman’s purse with an opened bottle of whiskey inside.
Legal Proceedings and Future Actions
Judge Timothy Boyle was assigned to the trial and a status hearing was set for January 8, 2024. Lichtenwalner is in custody at the Racine County Jail where bail was set at $25,000. The case remains ongoing, and the public is encouraged to follow the Racine County Eye or Kenosha Lens for the latest updates on trials and other court proceedings.
Driving under the influence of alcohol is a serious offense that can result in life-altering consequences. It is important for individuals to make responsible decisions and avoid drinking and driving to prevent accidents like the one that occurred in Racine County. Our thoughts are with the victim’s family during this difficult time.
Originally Post From https://racinecountyeye.com/2023/11/01/lichtenwalner-pleads-not-guilty-dui/
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