Janesville84.1°

Teen charged with homicide by drunken driving

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Mike Heine
November 16, 2007
— Bracing herself with crutches, Krystal A. Hart stood from a seat between her parents and hobbled to a seat next to her attorney, where for the first time she appeared before a judge to face a charge of homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle.

The criminal complaint filed Tuesday against the Badger High School junior revealed no surprises.


Hart, a 16-year-old softball player, was northbound in the southbound lane of County H in Como early in the morning of Nov. 3 when she slammed head-on into another car, according to the complaint.


The other driver, 54-year-old Everardo Chimal Lopez, died about an hour after the 2:43 a.m. crash.


Hart, 438 Main St., Genoa City, told police she was drinking before the crash at a friendís house in Lake Geneva, according to the complaint.


A breath test revealed her blood-alcohol level at 0.12 percent, and she told police she smoked marijuana 10 or 11 hours before the crash. She admitted a marijuana pipe found in her Mercury Sable belonged to her, according to the complaint.


At the accident scene, police smelled a ďvery strong odor of intoxicants coming from her,Ē and her eyes were glassy and bloodshot, according to the complaint.


Hart didnít specify where she had been before invoking her right to silence.


She told the first deputy on scene that she didnít know what happened, according to the complaint.


Hart appeared in court Thursday favoring a broken right ankle, protected by hot-pink cast.


At the time of the crash, Hart was wearing a seatbelt, and her airbag deployed, according to the police report.


Chimal Lopez, a landscaper from Delavan, had no seatbelt and no airbag, according to the report. He was on his way to Grand Geneva resort to pick up his two grown sons from work.


When he didnít arrive, the young men, Erik and Diego, thought their dad had car trouble. They left for home on bicycles.


Going the usual route, Erik and Diego came across the accident scene when police were still there. A friend took them to Aurora Lakeland Medical Center in Elkhorn where Everardo died.


Hart, who is free on a signature bond co-signed by her parents, faces a maximum penalty of 25 years in prison and a $100,000 fine. Her preliminary hearing is scheduled for 11 a.m. Monday, Dec. 3.


Hart is charged as an adult.



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