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July 16, 2019

6/1/2019 7:29:00 AM
Labahn vehicular homicide case nearing resolution
River News Staff

The case against a 22-year-old Mount Prospect, Ill. man accused of homicide by intoxicated use of a motor vehicle in connection with the death of his 23-year-old passenger in a June 2018 car crash in the town of Three Lakes is nearing a resolution.

Eric Labahn appeared in Oneida County Circuit Court via telephone Thursday afternoon (his attorney Andrew Mishlove appeared in person) at which time Oneida County district attorney Michael Schiek announced the toxicology results his office had been waiting for had arrived earlier in the day. Schiek told Oneida County Circuit Judge Michael Bloom that the defense is still in need of some crime lab records but they should be available within the next 30 days. He said the state and defense were making a joint request for a status conference in 60 to 90 days.

After Mishlove confirmed Schiek's recitation of the status of the case, Bloom said he would grant the continuance but stressed that he expects the case to be resolved soon.

"At that point (when a status conference is held Aug. 2) the matter will either be ready to put to rest or ready to schedule for trial," Bloom said. "For whatever it's worth, that's my expectation. In light of information that has apparently just come in today and other information apparently attainable within the next 30 days, my expectation is this matter will be ripe to be resolved or set for trial. I'd like things to be at that juncture by that date."

According to the criminal complaint, police were called to Military Road in Three Lakes just after 1 a.m. June 10, 2018 after a vehicle operated by Labahn struck a tree while swerving to avoid a deer. Labahn's passenger, Austin L. Lockwood, was pronounced dead at the scene. Open intoxicants were found inside the vehicle, the complaint states.

Labahn, who had a gash over his eye and complained of back problems, was transported to Eagle River Hospital where he refused a blood draw. A warrant was obtained and samples were drawn before he was airlifted to Wausau for further treatment, the complaint states.

According to testimony at the preliminary hearing, the lab reported Labahn's blood alcohol level was .117.

The first officer on scene also reported noticing signs that led him to believe Labahn was intoxicated.

"His speech was slurred and slowed and also there was an odor of intoxicant as we spoke," the officer testified at the preliminary hearing.

Mishlove later asked that a second test be done on Labahn's blood to determine if THC, the active ingredient in marijuana, was in his system at the time of the crash. Schiek described the information received Thursday as the results of a drug panel, but he did not elaborate as to what the results were.

Labahn is free on a $10,000 surety bond.

If convicted of the class D felony, he faces up to 25 years in prison and a fine of up to $100,000.

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