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Navy officer guilty of manslaughter in bridge plunge that killed 4

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SAN DIEGO — A Army petty officer whose automotive plunged off a hovering bridge in San Diego and killed 4 other people under was once convicted Wednesday of vehicular manslaughter whilst intoxicated.

A jury additionally discovered Richard Sepolio, 27, responsible of using below the affect inflicting damage however acquitted him of the more severe fees of gross vehicular manslaughter whilst intoxicated. He additionally was once acquitted of reckless using and using over the felony alcohol prohibit inflicting damage.

Sepolio might be sentenced to as much as 18 years in jail.

“This was once an ideal consequence in this case,” prosecutor Cally Shiny stated out of court docket. However Shiny added: “Not anything will carry again the members of the family misplaced that day.”

Prosecutors stated Sepolio have been consuming on Oct. 15, 2016, and was once arguing along with his female friend — now his spouse — through cell phone when he attempted to hurry previous some other automotive at the San Diego-Coronado Bridge. He misplaced keep watch over of his pickup truck, which crashed via a concrete and plunged 60 toes off the span right into a crowd celebrating a motorbike rally and competition at Chicano Park. The truck overwhelmed supplier cubicles the place other people had been status.

4 other people died, and 7 had been harm.

Sepolio’s pickup was once recorded doing 81 mph going onto the bridge, which stretches throughout San Diego Bay and hyperlinks San Diego to the Army the town of Coronado, the place Sepolio was once an aviation electronics technician.

The prosecution instructed jurors that Sepolio selected “to power aggravated, impaired and impatient.”

At trial, Sepolio testified that he’d had two beverages previous within the day however wasn’t inebriated and wasn’t at the cell phone name on the time of the crash.

The protection and prosecution disagreed on whether or not a number of blood and breath checks given to Sepolio indicated he was once impaired.

Protection lawyer Paul Pfingst stated out of doors court docket that he was once dissatisfied that Sepolio was once convicted of DUI although jurors did not in finding that he was once using with a blood-alcohol degree above the felony prohibit, KFMB-TV reported.

“My shopper is an excellent, first rate, younger guy who was once no longer using over the felony prohibit, and had a visitors twist of fate which has ended in this. He’ll pay a heavy worth for that, as will his circle of relatives,” Pfingst stated.

Jurors reached a verdict on Monday. However the pass judgement on held off on studying the decision till Wednesday following a Tuesday court docket vacation in order that friends and family of Sepolio and the sufferers — some from out of state — may just attend the listening to.

Sepolio’s spouse, their child and his folks from Texas attended the just about monthlong trial. Pfingst stated Sepolio requested him to inform his circle of relatives to “keep robust,” the San Diego Union-Tribune reported.

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