Reality TV star and former Olympic champion, Caitlyn Jenner will not be charged in connection with a crash in Malibu earlier this year that killed a 69-year-old woman, Los Angeles prosecutors said.
“We believed from the start that a thorough and objective investigation would clear Caitlyn of any criminal wrongdoing. We are heartened the District Attorney has agreed that even a misdemeanor charge would be inappropriate,” Jenner’s attorney, Blair Berk, said in a written statement.
The incident happened when Jenner, 65, was driving along Pacific Coast Highway and towing a trailer carrying a dune buggy when she slammed into two other cars.
During the crash, a white Lexus being driven by 69-year-old Kim Howe was shoved by Jenner’s sport-utility vehicle across a centre divider and into oncoming traffic, where it was struck head-on by a Hummer.
Tragically, Howe was killed in the collision and Jessica Steindorff, who was driving a black Toyota Prius also rear-ended by Jenner, was injured.
According to a summary of the investigation released by the district attorney’s office, Jenner was driving slightly below the speed limit and “minimally slower than the victim” and braked 1.9 to 1.5 seconds before the collision.
The only possible violation against Jenner would be a “violation of the basic speed law,” meaning too fast for the conditions.
But, prosecutors said in the document, “crime also requires ordinary negligence. Based on facts, cannot prove beyond a reasonable doubt that suspect’s conduct was unreasonable.”
Reasonable doubt is the standard required in California, and in most US courts, to prove a defendant guilty of a crime.
Both Steindorff and Howe’s stepchildren family have sued Jenner, who was known as Bruce Jenner at the time of the crash.
“The DA’s decision not to pursue criminal charges places even more importance on our clients’ lawsuit. It is abundantly clear is that Ms. Jenner’s inattentive driving caused this rear-end collision that resulted in Ms. Howe’s death,” Jeffrey Wolf, an attorney for Howe’s family, said in a written statement.
“Now, ultimately a jury trial in this civil case is the only way to hold Ms. Jenner accountable for causing Kim Howe’s death. We are going to continue our efforts to ensure that justice is served,” Wolf said.
Although Caitlyn will not be charged for the death of Howe, she was directly involved in causing the accident and many say she should be made to pay. What do you think? Is she getting off lightly or not?
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