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Madison man pleads guilty in drunken crash that killed teens

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Posted at 7:59 PM, Jul 28, 2022
and last updated 2022-07-28 20:59:31-04

MADISON, Wis. (AP) — A Madison man accused of speeding and driving drunk in a rear-end crash that killed three high school seniors pleaded guilty Thursday.

Eric Mehring, 31, was convicted on three counts of homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle. The crash in Middleton killed Madison West senior Simon Bilessi and Middleton High seniors Evan Kratochwill and Jack Miller.

Mehring told a sheriff’s deputy investigating the October 2021 crash in the town of Middleton that it happened because of “too much speed and more drinks that I should have had to drive.” The Chevy Cruz struck by Mehring’s Jaguar ended up in a cornfield where it ignited.

A preliminary breath test found Mehring’s blood alcohol concentration to be just over 0.24 percent, three times the legal limit for drivers in Wisconsin. Mehring also told investigators he was going 75 mph before the crash, a speed he attributed to “overconfidence."

Miller's family said in a release that while it was appropriate for Mehring to take responsibility for his actions, he “deliberately and thoughtlessly” chose to drive drunk at a high rate of speed.

“His selfish choices have deprived Jack, Evan, and Simon of the future lives they so richly deserved," the statement said.

Sentencing is scheduled for Dec. 9.

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