Judge assesses probation in manslaughter case

A Westphalia woman was placed on five years supervised probation after a judge found her guilty of first-degree involuntary manslaughter in connection with a fatal car accident in March 2011.

Julie Laux, 36, appeared Thursday before Miller County Judge Kenneth Hayden.

Hayden found Laux guilty during a court trial in November. She had waived her right to a jury trial.

Hayden heard evidence from both sides in the case and found Laux guilty of manslaughter, but not guilty of a charge of second-degree assault.

Laux was the driver of a vehicle that Kenneth Eichholz, 48, Westphalia, was riding in.

She was on Missouri 52 west of St. Elizabeth when she ran off the road and overcorrected twice before overturning.

Eichholz was not wearing a seat belt, but Laux was. Eichholz was pronounced dead at the scene.

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