Plea hearing set in case

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COEUR d’ALENE — A change of plea hearing is set in the case of a Priest River man charged with vehicular manslaughter and aggravated drunken driving, according to 1st District Court records.

The plea hearing in Cory Allan Kreager’s case is set for July 15 in Kootenai County District Court.

Kreager, 36, pleaded not guilty to the felony charges in April, setting the stage for a jury trial. Kreager entered into mediation to resolve his case, but the mediator advised the court last month that the state and defense could not reach an agreement.

“The parties are at an impasse. I am able to conduct further mediation if the parties want me to do so,” Senior District Judge Benjamin R. Simpson told the court on May 22.

It does not appear from court records that additional mediation was conducted, however.

Kreager is a free on a $150,000 surety bond while the case is pending, court documents indicate.

Idaho State Police said Kreager was eastbound on Boekel Road and failed to stop at the road’s intersection with U.S. Highway 95 on March 9. Kreager’s Ford F-350 pickup truck collided broadside with a Dodge Caravan on U.S. 95.

Kreager told state police he was distracted by his mobile phone while driving and didn’t see the stop sign at the intersection, according to a trooper’s probable cause affidavit. Kreager’s breath-alcohol concentration was measured at 0.12, which well above the legal limit to drive of 0.08.

The crash killed Ryan M. Allen, a 38-year-old from Cocolalla, state police said. The collision seriously injured driver Vern Allen, 51; passenger Patricia C. Allen, 71; and passenger Troy V. Allen, also 51.

Patricia Allen was a featured speaker during a kickoff event held by the North Idaho DUI Task Force last month in Coeur d’Alene. It was learned during the presentation that Ryan Allen was wheelchair bound after being injured by a drunken driver in a prior crash.

Keith Kinnaird can be reached by email at kkinnaird@bonnercountydailybee.com and follow him on Twitter @KeithDailyBee.

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