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Nov. 23, 2020

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Woman guilty of homicide for DUII crash that killed daughter

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CORVALLIS, Ore. — A Corvallis woman pleaded guilty to criminally negligent homicide on Thursday in Polk County Circuit Court for a 2019 car crash that killed her teenage daughter.

Kayla Carter also pleaded guilty for third-degree assault and no contest to driving under the influence of intoxicants, The Gazette-Times reported.

Carter, with her 13-year-old daughter in the passenger seat of her car, ran a stop sign at an intersection on March 16, 2019, documents said. Her vehicle collided with car heading north on the highway.

Brianna Carter was pronounced dead at the scene. Jessica Cornett of Bend, the driver of the other car, was injured.

According to court documents, Carter’s blood alcohol content was found to be approximately .059% by Good Samaritan Regional Medical Center staff in Corvallis.

“Ms. Carter’s pleas today are a compromise,” her lawyer Mike Flinn wrote in an email to the Gazette-Times. “She had viable defenses to each of the crimes alleged, and we believe the District Attorney’s office would have had a difficult time convincing a jury that there was proof beyond a reasonable doubt that these crimes occurred. However, there are always risks in going to trial.”

As part of the deal, charges of second-degree manslaughter and second-degree criminal mischief were dismissed. Sentencing was set for December.

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