- Associated Press - Tuesday, January 23, 2018

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (AP) - The trial of a Kentucky trucker charged with killing six people and injuring others in 2015 when his tractor-trailer careered into stopped traffic on a Tennessee highway focused on drug test results Tuesday.

News outlets report that prosecutors said Benjamin Brewer, 42, caused the crash while high on methamphetamines and never hit the brakes.

“Four-hundred-fifty-three feet that sounded like cries for help and helplessness at the same time. That is what this man,” said prosecutor Crystle Carrion, pointing to Brewer, “left behind him when he crashed his tractor-trailer going 80 mph while high on meth.”

However, Brewer’s public attorneys said he fell asleep at the wheel and that the evaluation used to determine that Brewer was on drugs is reliable only 33 percent of the time. Defense attorney Erinn O’Leary said that although state witnesses contended Brewer was remorseless after the wreck, none of them documented any concerns about Brewer being under the influence.

Brewer is charged with six counts of vehicular homicide, four counts of reckless aggravated assault and three other driving charges. He faces up to 72 years in prison if convicted.


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