WICHITA, Kan. (KSNW) – The trial for the man charged in connection with a traffic crash that killed two Starkey clients began Tuesday.
Bret Blevins is accused of involuntary manslaughter, second-degree murder, and driving under influence last May 6. He entered court Tuesday, silent, and said very little to his defense attorney.
The state has brought forward court documents that claim Blevins was legally drunk and had been using meth before the fatal crash happened. They also plan to introduce evidence Blevins was accelerating and going 49 miles an hour when an SUV collided with that Starkey van, killing two.
The state prosecutor, Kari Burks, brought out a witness who lives near the site of that accident last May that took two lives.
“We heard a big bang, and I walked to the end of the driveway and (saw) the Escalade was upside down,” said Mary, the woman who lives a block from the scene of the accident.
Burks asked questions of Mary as well, who says she saw the SUV blow through a stop sign a block before the accident. That witness says she did not see who was driving.
The prosecution says it plans to prove Blevins was driving, even though Blevin’s girlfriend of the time was inside the car during the accident.
“You will hear, in his words… ‘I do remember seeing, I thought I saw, a burgundy car and I thought I missed it,'” Burks said, reciting what she says is a phone call from Blevins. Burks says Blevins talked to someone on the phone about the accident. And Burks says that phone call will be presented as evidence in the trial.
Meanwhile, the defense for Blevins plans on proving it was not Bret Blevins who was driving the SUV that day in May of last year.
Blevins defense attorney Carl Maughan asked the witness, Mary, about what she saw.
“When you saw this Escalade go through the stop sign at Tracey and Newell, you couldn’t see who was driving?” asked Maughan.
“I did not see who was driving,” replied the witness, Mary.
“You couldn’t tell if it was a man or woman? And you certainly couldn’t tell if it was Mr. Bret Blevins?” asked Maughan. “That’s correct,” replied the witness, Mary.
In court Tuesday, both the state and defense offered a lot in opening statements. The state said it is a very clear case that Blevins drove under influence and killed two people. However, the defense said the accident was a tragedy, and they have a plan to show it may not have been Blevins driving.
Both the defense and prosecution will continue Wednesday morning.
KSN’s Craig Andres is following the trial in court. Look for his updates on Twitter.