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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Idaho

Driver charged in crash that killed 2 on I-90

The driver who caused a fatal crash on Saturday was charged with two counts of felony vehicular manslaughter and one count of driving without a license.

Bail for Kevin T. Culp, 22, of Spokane, was set at $250,000 on Monday, because of the serious nature of the incident and because of a prior charge of manslaughter, said Kootenai County Judge Barry Watson. Culp is being held in the Kootenai County Jail for the deaths of Henrietta Lewis and Tonia Lewis, who were in the van Culp hit on Interstate 90, east of the Washington-Idaho border.

Police have said that Culp experienced an epileptic seizure before or while crashing into the van and a semitruck.

Culp said he does not recall the crash itself, said Idaho State Police trooper Ron Sutton, and he denies that it was an intentional act. The manslaughter count was designated a felony because of Culp’s negligence – knowingly having a medical condition and driving although he had not taken his prescription seizure medication for two or three days, and for driving without a license, Sutton said.

Culp’s girlfriend, who loaned him her Suzuki SUV, may face charges of being an accessory to the crime, or of allowing a non-licensed person to drive her car, pending the results of an investigation, Sutton said.

Culp was charged with first-degree manslaughter in 2004 after he fatally shot a man while fiddling with a gun he said he didn’t know was loaded. A jury deadlocked earlier this year in deciding his guilt and the trial has been reset for Oct. 24.

Travis Lewis, one of the van’s passengers, improved from serious to satisfactory condition at Deaconess Medical Center, while his 9-month-old son remained in critical condition at Sacred Heart Medical Center.

Another passenger, Robert Buckley, remained in fair condition at Kootenai Medical Center. The truck driver was not injured.

The father of an 11-year-old van passenger who was released from the hospital said Culp’s medical condition should not put people at risk. John Fenton, who had previously been in a relationship with Henrietta Lewis, said their son, Riven, experienced the loss of his mother and aunt as a result of Culp’s actions.

“To allow him to see the light of day,” Fenton said, “would be a travesty.”

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