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News >  Idaho

Convicted Lapwai man to get new trial

Associated Press

LAPWAI, Idaho – The Idaho Supreme Court has determined a Lapwai man convicted of vehicular manslaughter and aggravated driving while intoxicated should receive a new trial.

Richard Robinett was found guilty by a 2nd District Court jury in March 2002. He was later sentenced to a minimum 18 months in prison. His brother-in-law, Russell Lawrence, was killed in the May 2001 crash in Lewiston. Robinett and his daughter, Patricia, were seriously injured.

Robinett’s lawyer, Todd Richardson of Lewiston, said the district court erred in admitting the results of blood alcohol tests taken two hours after the accident.

The high court said Friday results of Robinett’s blood tests should not have been admitted without evidence connecting the test results to the time of the alleged offense and evidence showing how the test results related to the issue of impairment.

The court agreed that Nez Perce County Prosecutor Daniel Spickler gave his closing arguments improperly when discussing the proof required to establish guilt for aggravated DWI.

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