- Associated Press - Saturday, November 22, 2014

TOPEKA, Kan. (AP) - A Kansas appeals court on Friday ordered a lower court to resentence a former Kansas State University student who was placed on probation and house arrest after driving drunk and killing two people in a head-on collision.

Miles Theurer was 23 on May 14, 2012, when he drove in the wrong lane through a construction zone along Kansas 18 while returning to Manhattan after a night of drinking at a Junction City strip club, The Topeka Capital-Journal (https://bit.ly/1BVCeL2) reported.

Theurer’s eastbound Silverado pickup truck struck a westbound car at 2:45 a.m., killing two occupants in the car, Elizabeth Young, 31, a mother of two, and Michael Stanley, 30, a father of two.

Theurer and two passengers in his vehicle were severely injured.

Court documents indicate he and several friends had been out celebrating on the night after Theurer received his bachelor of science degree in agriculture. Blood drawn several hours after the crash showed his blood-alcohol level was at .19, more than twice the legal limit.

Theurer pleaded no contest to two counts of involuntary manslaughter in May 2013 as part of a plea deal in which Riley County prosecutors agreed to dismiss two charges of aggravated battery and not file additional charges.

Prosecutors also recommended the two presumptive sentences under Kansas guidelines to run concurrently, and that Theurer spend 41 months in prison.

Before he was sentenced, Theurer cited 17 mitigating circumstances as compelling reasons to support his motion for a downward departure from a prison sentence.

Riley County District Court Judge John Bosch also considered roughly 100 character reference statements submitted on Theurer’s behalf by Kansas State teachers, administrators, fellow students and family members.

They noted that Theurer was a 4.0 student in high school, had no criminal record, that his health was affected by Type I diabetes, that he was pursuing a degree in veterinary medicine, that he had expressed his remorse to the victims’ families and others, that he posed no danger to the community, and that he would be a well-spoken advocate in warning others of the dangers of drinking and driving.

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Information from: The Topeka (Kan.) Capital-Journal, https://www.cjonline.com


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