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(Eudora, MS) “It’s frustrating, very frustrating,” said accident victim Jeri Smith.
She’s had a year-long lesson on the slow wheels of justice.
She can barely walk after a tragic motorcycle accident in July of 2011.
Her husband died instantly.
But the man she says is responsible, Adam Etlicher, spent virtually no time in jail even though blood test results found cocaine in his system.
After more than a year, the Grand Jury finally got the case and reached a decision last week.
But Jeri Smith is still in the dark, “My family has not had justice.”
John Champion says his office has contacted Jeri Smith’s lawyer about the Grand Jury decision.
But her attorney tells us he hasn’t been contacted and didn’t know the Grand Jury had the case.
We asked the District Attorney if a phone call was the least thing his office could do since the family is waiting on the latest information.
“I don’t disagree with that at all. We will contact the point of contact person,” says Champion.
Champion can’t comment on the specifics of this case, but says in DUI death cases, evidence is presented to the Grand Jury and prosecutors have to prove two things.
“One being impairment and second being an act of negligence. You must have both of them,” says Champion.
He says drugs in a suspect’s system does not necessarily mean they are impaired.
Tests must be done and certain drug levels must be met.
“We have to rely on our experts to be able to tell us whether or not the numbers we are looking at will rise to the level of impairment,” says Champion.
So Jeri Smith waits, still hoping for justice.
The District Attorney says if there is no indictment in the DUI case against Adam Etlicher, the case cannot be brought to the Grand Jury again unless there is new evidence.
But Jeri Smith has filed a civil suit against Etlicher, hoping to make him pay for her medical costs.