Officer pleads guilty in crash that killed 4
CLAYTON, Mo. (KMOX) — Former Sunset Hills Police Officer Christine Miller enters a blind guilty plea in the March 2009 drunk driving crash that killed four college students from India.
Throwing herself on the mercy of the judge, she could get from probation to 67 years in prison when she’s sentenced in March. She admitted her guilt to four counts of involuntary manslaughter and one count of felony assault.
On house arrest with an electronic ankle bracelet since she was charged, Miller reportedly suffered a serious head injury in the crash. At Thursday’s hearing, Miller was able to walk confidently in and out of court on her own, and sneak out a side door, before reporters could catch up with her.
Her attorney, Scott Rosenblum, says she faces “significant neurological issues,” including no memory of the night of the crash.
“This is a tragic, tragic event for everybody involved,” Rosenblum told reporters afterward, sitting behind his desk stacked with legal papers. When asked if his client is well enough to go to prison, Rosenblum responded, “I’m an attorney, not a doctor.”
Had the case gone to trial, the St. Louis County Prosecutor’s office was prepared to show evidence that Miller’s blood alcohol level was twice the legal limit, and that she had a bar receipt in her purse for five “cosmopolitan ” mixed drinks.
A spokesman for the victims, Sharath Rao, says the deaths left a gaping hole. “I went to India and met each victim’s parents,” Rao said, “Even six months later, they couldn’t stop bringing the tear to their eyes.”
Sentencing is set for March 10, 2011 at 9:00 a.m. in division ten. Judge Michael Jamison will preside.
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