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Trial Continues for Fatal Ypsilanti Drunk-Driving Accident

The criminal murder case of a 35-year-old Ypsilanti man continues to unfold in court this week. Defendant Bradley Wayne Howard, of Ypsilanti Township, is defending charges related to a fatal drunk-driving accident that occurred last October. The five-car accident killed a mother and left her two children injured.

The crash occurred at the intersection of Ecorse and Harris Roads. Witnesses state that a vehicle driven by Stephanie Joyce Stone, 32, proceeded through a green light at the intersection. Witnesses claim they then heard the roar of an engine accelerating and saw a Yellow Ford Mustang run a red light while travelling 60-80 mph and enter the intersection, crashing into Stone's vehicle. The impact of the collision was so great that Stone's car struck three other cars.

Witnesses and responders reported that Stone was unresponsive, as was her child in the front passenger seat who suffered major injuries. Another child was found crying and flailing in the back seat, surviving the crash with minor injuries.

In courtroom testimony by witness Kenyatta Smith, the driver of the Mustang, Howard, started walking away briskly from the bloody scene of the car accident. Smith claims to have taken video footage of Howard's odd post-accident demeanor on his cell phone. In his testimony, Smith explained that Howard appeared to be under the influence of some substance, whether it be alcohol or drugs.

The prosecution is presenting evidence that Howard was under the influence of alcohol, THC, Hydrocodone (a painkiller) and Alprazolam (anti-anxiety medication). Aside from the second-degree murder charge, Howard faces a variety of additional charges including operating while intoxicated causing death, operating while intoxicated causing serious injury, operating while intoxicated third-offense and failing to stop at an accident causing death.

Source: AnnArbor.com, "Witness testifies he recorded driver leaving scene of fatal Ypsilanti Township car accident," 3/1/2011.

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