Former police officer Jason Anderson, found guilty late last year of misconduct with a motor vehicle in the death of two Orange teenagers, is scheduled to be sentenced next week.
Anderson was acquitted late last year of manslaughter charges in the deaths of David Servin and Ashlie Krakowski. Instead, a jury found him guilty of lesser charges of misconduct with a motor vehicle and of reckless driving.
The charges stem from an accident in the early morning hours of June 13, 2009, when Anderson’s cruiser struck the vehicle driven by Servin at the intersection of the Boston Post Road and Dogwood Road. The police car was going 94 mph.
The verdict can carry a prison sentence of up to 10 years.
Anderson was returning from a mutual aid call in West Haven when his cruiser struck and killed the two teenagers.
Servin was driving Krakowski’s car. They had been at a party in Milford earlier that night, and an autopsy revealed that he had a blood alcohol level of seven times the legal limit.
Witnesses said Servin did not stop at the intersection, even though he had a blinking yellow light. By the same token, the police cruiser did not slow down when it was crossing earlier intersections.
The case drew attention not only because of the tragic nature of the accident but also because of some confusion on the part of the jury during the trial.
In a first attempt at a verdict, the jury answered yes to a special question posed by the defense as to whether Servin’s conduct constituted an “intervening cause.” The question — called special interrogatory — threw a monkey wrench into the process.
According to the legal principle, simply “contributing” to a certain situation does not satisfy the standard of an “intervening cause.”
The jury initially said yes to the intervening cause, then went on to find Anderson guilty of misconduct in Krakowski’s case and negligent homicide in Servin’s case.
The judge said she could not accept the verdict, and that the jury’s findings were inconsistent. If it found Servin’s actions to have contributed to the accident, it could not convict Anderson of a crime.
The judge tasked the jury with clarifying its intentions.
Later, the jury said no to the question of intervening cause and found Anderson guilty of misconduct.
He is scheduled to be sentenced Wednesday, Jan. 16, at Milford Superior Court.