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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper
Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Sirens & Gavels

No verdict yet in vehicular homicide trial

The jury in the Jon Strine vehicular homicide trial has gone home for the day.

The 12 jurors deliberated until about 5 p.m. today and will reconvene Thursday at 9 a.m. They deliberated for about an hour and a half on Tuesday following closing arguments. That includes time reviewing jury instructions and choosing a foreman.

The jury is to decide whether Strine, 43, was criminally negligent when his Mercedes crashed into a motorcycle in June 2009, paralyzing the driver, Gary Keller, and killing the passenger, Keller's wife, Lorri Keller.

Strine, a stockbroker, admits to drinking before the crash but disputes a state test that placed his blood-alcohol level at .20.

Jurors watched surveillance videos from Fast Eddie's bar in which Strine does not appear to be visibility drunk. They also viewed video from Washington State Department of Transportation camera that shows Strine driving with the flow of traffic.

Other motorists who witnessed the crash have testified that Strine was driving erratically just before the crash.

Last week, Strine said he falsely told a doctor he hadn't anything to drink after the crash because a police officer was listening.

“I was afraid,” said Strine, who is charged with vehicular homicide and vehicular assault. “I knew (Spokane police Officer Paul) Watson was going to try to pin this on me.”

Past coverage:

Feb. 4: Strine says he wasn't drunk during fatal crash

Jan. 26: Sleepy juror removed from Strine trial

June 25, 2009: Driver sued over deadly wreck

June 4, 2009: School district on crash victim: 'Everybody just loved her'

Public safety news from the Inland Northwest and beyond.