Deatsville woman pleads guilty in 2017 fatal construction site crash

Published: Jul. 21, 2021 at 11:41 AM CDT
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AUTAUGA COUNTY, Ala. (WSFA) - A Deatsville woman charged in a 2017 fatal construction site crash pleaded guilty Tuesday.

According to court records, Kelly Dingler, 38, pleaded guilty to manslaughter in the death of Larue Bandy.

At the time of the crash, Alabama state troopers said Dingler was driving her Ford Explorer through a construction zone about four miles outside Prattville when she fatally struck Brady. She was arrested a week after the crash following her release from the hospital. She was subsequently charged with driving under the influence of a controlled substance and manslaughter.

In 2019, a mistrial was declared after body camera evidence related to the case was discovered a day before the trial was set to begin. The evidence depicted a blood test being performed on Dingler following the accident, which the defense said she had not consented to.

According to the Autauga County District Attorney’s office, the defense was entitled to see the evidence prior to trial. Circuit Court Judge Bill Lewis declared a mistrial and sent the jury home.

Dingler was later reindicted for reckless murder. Court records show that Dingler filed a motion requesting the charge be dismissed based on double jeopardy.

The state filed a response to Dingler’s motion stating that since she had been reindicted only on the reckless murder charge it no longer intended to admit the evidence that was the subject of the first mistrial.

The motion to dismiss was denied Monday.

“It is a very bittersweet ending,” Autauga County Chief Deputy District Attorney CJ Robinson said. “I mean, what she did, in my opinion, was clearly murder. But, there’s a difference between what I know, what I believe and what I can prove with evidence.”

Dingler will serve the maximum sentence of just under 15 years.

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