WILMINGTON – The woman who was charged with vehicular manslaughter in a November accident in Blanchester is set for a motion hearing Dec. 7.
Michelle Julien, 54, of Pleasant Plain, was indicted March 23 on charges of aggravated vehicular homicide in the second degree, reckless homicide in the third degree, vehicular manslaughter, a misdemeanor in the second degree and lanes of travel, a minor misdemeanor.
In November, Julien was driving a 2000 Ford van westbound on West Main Street in Blanchester. According to the Ohio State Highway Patrol, her vehicle traveled left of center and struck a 1988 Mercedes-Benz, driven by Jerry Lee Brandenburg, 55, of Blanchester,
Both vehicles had one passenger each. The passenger in Brandenburg’s vehicle, Margie Richie, 80, of Blanchester, was fatally injured in the accident, according to the OSHP.
The OSHP said Richie and Brandenburg were not wearing their seatbelts while Julien and her passenger, Christopher Hoeb, 44, of Batavia, were.
Julien was arraigned and a bond of $10,000 was set March 31. Julien posted bond that day and was released from jail.
Pre-trial hearings were May 15, July 17 and Aug. 21.
At the pre-trial hearing Aug. 21, Daniel O’Brien, Julien’s lawyer, filed a motion to suppress with the court.
The motion was filed to have evidence the state was presenting removed from the case.
In the motion, which was obtained by the News Journal, O’Brien said Julien “was questioned and detained by a state highway patrol officer called to the scene specifically to obtain incriminating evidence against her.”
While being interviewed by the officer, O’Brien said his client allegedly admitted to taking Adderall, but later the officer failed to mention to the magistrate judge that the Adderall was prescribed to Julien, according to the motion.
O’Brien also said in the motion all information Julien gave the state highway patrol officer “was done in the absence of Miranda warnings and was involuntary as a matter of law.”
In the motion, O’Brien also stated Julien “said she was blinded by bright lights from the oncoming lane immediately prior to the accident,” something the patrol officer “inadvertently failed to tell the magistrate.”
O’Brien said in the motion the tests to determine Julien’s drug level were taken involuntarily and Julien was coerced.
After the police obtained her blood, the analysis was not done by an approved method, O’Brien said in the motion.
Similarly, Julien’s blood sample container was not properly sealed or refrigerated at all times, and O’Brien also claimed in the motion the person who analyzed Julien’s blood did not have the proper permit to do so.
In the motion, O’Brien asked the court to suppress “any and all written and oral statements” Julien made and “all pretrial and courtroom testimony” because the statements violate Julien’s fifth, sixth and 14th amendments.
Matt Sullentrop, prosecuting attorney representing the state, objected to the motion, saying the motion was “untimely.”
“From the state’s perspective, we provided full discovery from the beginning,” Sullentrop said.
Clinton County Court of Common Pleas Judge John W. “Tim” Rudduck said that while the motion was filed out of the normal time, he will accept the motion as is.
“I don’t know why it’s been delayed this long,” he said.
Rudduck said denying the motion could cause problems in the future, which is why he was accepting it.
“I think to deny this motion at this stage seriously would create a very appealable issue and deny the defendant due process in court,” he said.
Any other motions the defense or prosecution wishes to file must be filed by Nov. 6, Rudduck said. The oral hearing on the defense’s motion is set for Dec. 7 at 2 p.m.
A three-day jury trial was also tentatively scheduled for Jan. 12-14, 2016.
Reach Dylanne Petros at 937-382-2574, ext. 2514, or on Twitter @DylannePetros.