April 18, 2002

Dial Facing Involuntary Manslaughter Charge Stemming From Car Crash

Nearly three months after a fatal accident took the life of a Scotland County teenager, the driver of the vehicle will head to court on a charge of involuntary manslaughter in the death of the passenger in her car.

Lydia M. Dial, 20, of Memphis was charged with the class C felony of involuntary manslaughter with a motor vehicle following the January 11 accident.

The felony complaint states "the defendant, while under the influence of alcohol, caused the death of Heather L. Fogle by operating her vehicle in such a manner that it overturned, ejecting Fogle, an occupant in the defendant's automobile."

The complaint goes on to indicate that Dial was operating the vehicle with criminal negligence, driving too fast for the conditions, failing to maintain control of the vehicle allowing it to travel off the maintained portion of the roadway.

The case is scheduled on the Ralls County Associate Circuit docket for April 17 at 10:00 a.m.

The ticket was issued by the Missouri State Highway Patrol investigating officers on January 11.

The complaint was filed against Dial on April 5 after a lengthy process of appointing a judge for the case as well as a special prosecutor.

Scotland County Prosecuting Attorney Susan Henry, a relative of the defendant as well as the employer of the victim, filed a request for a special prosecutor in the case on February 13.

The case went through judge changes as well, as northeast Missouri judges are colleagues of the defendant's father, Scotland County Circuit Judge Gary Dial.

Presiding Circuit Judge Karl DeMarce appointed Judge Steven Wilcox on February 25. Wilcox recused himself from the case leading DeMarce to refer the case to the Office of State Courts Administrator (OSCA) and the Missouri Supreme Court for the appointment of a special judge.

Six days later OSCA appointed Judge David C. Mobley of the 10th Judicial Circuit of Ralls County to hear the case.

On March 6 Henry filed the order requesting the appointment of Tom Hensley of Kirksville as the special prosecutor for the case.

Hensely filed the complaint on April 5 followed by a joint agreement between the prosecution and defense for a change of venue to Ralls County that was filed on April 9.



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