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Judge Frees Man Convicted In Fatal Toyota Crash

Prosecutors say they will not seek re-trial.

by on Aug.06, 2010

A judge freed the driver of this Camry after three years in prison. A new hearing suggested the accident could have been caused by defects in the 1996 Toyota Camry.

A Minnesota trial judge has ordered the release of a man who has claimed a runaway Toyota Camry led to a fatal accident.

Koua Fong Lee is a free man today after Ramsey County District Court Judge Joanne Smith ruled that new evidence supports his innocence, his attorney said, after the judge handed down the decision.

The ruling comes after a four-day hearing over a cruise control problem in the Toyota Camry that Mr. Lee was driving in a 2006 crash that claimed the lives of three people and resulted in his being sentenced to prison.

Ramsey County Attorney Susan Gaertner has said prosecutors would not seek a new trial. (See Retrial Requested in Minnesota Toyota Homicide)

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In June of 2006, Lee and his family were returning from Sunday church services when his his 1996 Camry accelerated to a reported 90 mph on a freeway off-ramp before rear-ending another vehicle stopped at a light.  Three members of the Adams family were killed, two others injured.

“I did everything I could to stop that vehicle and that vehicle didn’t stop,” Lee told a Minnesota TV news crew after his release from Lino Lakes prison.