CHIPPEWA FALLS — An Edgar woman accused of vehicular homicide when she apparently missed a stop sign, causing a fatal crash north of Stanley in July 2017, returned to court on Wednesday.
Miranda Jo Miller, 21, is charged with one count of homicide by negligent operation of a motor vehicle in Chippewa County Court.
Judge Steve Cray set a new court date for Dec. 4. Miller, who is free on bond, appeared in person. At the conclusion of the hearing, a woman in the back of the courtroom became irate, swearing at Miller and called her a “murderer” for killing her father. The woman was escorted from the courtroom by the bailiff.
According to the criminal complaint, the two-vehicle crash occurred at 12:36 p.m. July 22, 2017, at the intersection of Highway G and 170th Avenue in the town of Colburn.
Jeremy Goodwin, 46, 12123 Highway X, was driving a 2002 Ford 350, headed southbound on Highway G, with two passengers, ages 9 and 15.
Miller was westbound on 170th Avenue, and the two vehicles collided in the intersection. Goodwin’s vehicle entered the right ditch and rolled. He was pronounced dead at the scene.
He was not wearing his seat belt; both of his passengers were wearing seat belts and survived the crash.
The Wisconsin State Patrol handled the investigation, and a Technical Reconstruction Unit was called to the scene.
There is a “stop ahead” sign 1,031 feet ahead of the stop sign at the intersection.
Miller told investigators she was trying to find a cellular signal, and her phone was on a seat next to her. She said she was checking it every 30 seconds to see if she had a signal.
“She did not remember if there was a stop sign at the intersection, or if she had stopped for it or not,” the criminal complaint states.
No alcohol was found in the system of either driver. The crash reconstruction report indicates Goodwin was likely traveling 40 to 60 mph, and Miller was going 18-34 mph.
“It is mathematically possible that Ms. Miller stopped at the stop sign, however based on statements from (the passenger in Goodwin’s car) and Ms. Miller herself, it is likely Ms. Miller did not stop at the stop sign,” the report concludes.
Cellular records do not provide enough data to indicate if she was actively using her phone while driving, the complaint states.
Miller also was previously cited for failure to wear a seat belt and failure to yield right of way at a stop sign; she pleaded no contest to those charges in September 2017.