Man accused of intoxicated-driving death also faces prison in old case

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Frank Schultz
Wednesday, October 25, 2017

A Janesville man arrested Friday after a crash that killed a 70-year-old Juda man faces likely charges in that case as well as a new prison term for a 2003 Dane County conviction.

The state Department of Corrections is recommending five years in prison for Nathan L. Leopold, 44, because of the alleged violations of his probation in Friday's crash and also because he killed a jogger while driving in 2002.

As reported earlier, Leopold was convicted of homicide by negligent driving and hit-and-run causing death for killing Aimee Kubler, 28.

Kubler was jogging on a Dane County road in the town of Primrose in April 2002 when Leopold hit her with his truck, according to news reports.

Leopold was sentenced to seven years and seven months in prison for those offenses, plus extended supervision of four years and 11 months, according to online court records.

On Friday, Leopold crossed the centerline on Highway 11 in the town of Spring Grove at about 6 p.m. and crashed head-on into a vehicle driven by David P. Leck, 70, of Juda, according to a Green County Sheriff's Office news release.

Leopold told deputies he had fallen asleep, according to the release.

Leck died as a result of the crash. A passenger in Leck's vehicle, Emily E. Withee, 12, Brodhead, was injured and taken to Mercy Hospital and Trauma Center in Janesville, according to the release.

Leopold was treated overnight at Mercy before being transferred to the Rock County Jail.

Green County deputies arrested Leopold on a tentative charge of driving while intoxicated with drugs.

Green County District Attorney Craig Nolen said in an email Wednesday that he could not comment on charges until the investigation is complete.

The investigation could include tests of Leopold's blood by the state Crime Lab, and those tests could take several weeks, Nolen wrote.

Probation and parole agent Angie Langbecker wrote to Dane County Judge Jill Karofsky on Tuesday, saying the Department of Corrections had revoked Leopold's probation in a 2002 felony bail jumping case and recommends Leopold be sentenced to five years in prison plus five years of extended supervision in that case.

As part of his probation in the bail jumping case, Leopold was ordered to abstain from alcohol and to get alcohol/drug treatment.

Langbecker wrote that Leopold violated his probation rules Friday by driving after ingesting alcohol, marijuana and synthetic marijuana and by ingesting opiates and possessing a marijuana pipe.

Leopold admitted he smokes marijuana regularly and said he smoked synthetic marijuana around 2 p.m. Friday. He denied using opiates but suggested the synthetic drug might have included opiates, according to Langbecker's letter to the court.

Leopold also admitted drinking three beers with dinner after work on Friday, Langbecker wrote.

As part of the extended supervision imposed in the 2002 death, Leopold was ordered to visit the site of the fatal accident each year.

Langbecker wrote that Leopold's time in prison and on supervision and the guilt of causing a death while driving “have done little to deter him from participating in similar activity,” and so he should be held to account for his actions.

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