Princeton, W. Va. (WVVA) – A mistrial was declared Friday in the case of a man charged with a fatal Interstate 77 crash in 2017 that took the life of a Beckley man.
Nicholas C Andrepont, current resident of Raleigh County, was charged in September 2017 with driving in an impaired state causing death after a crash. Andrepont reportedly was driving southbound down the northbound lane of I-77, resulting in a head-on collision with a tractor-trailer, and hitting a pick-up truck with trailer. Cody Tyler Kinkaid, 27, of Beckley passed away as a result of the crash.
Jury deliberations began at around 11:30 a.m. after hearing the closing arguments. Circuit Court Judge Derek Swope consulted with the jurors on continuing deliberations, and after getting confirmation, the two alternate jurors were dismissed.
After around an hour of deliberations, jurors dismissed for lunch. Upon returning, one juror had fallen ill and could not return. Swope commented that the alternate juror could not be called back for reasons of possible mentions of the trial with the public.
Assistant Prosecutor Lauren Lynch told the jury in the state’s closing argument that DNA evidence found in the vehicle driver’s side showed the at Kincaid was the driver. The fatal injuries sustained by Kincaid were consistent with those that would have been suffered by a passenger.
In the defense’s closing argument, Andrepont’s attorney Joe Harvey stated that DNA evidence discovered showed Kincaid was the driver of the vehicle. No witnesses testified to seeing Andrepont driving the vehicle, and security video shot at Princeton Southern Exposure earlier in the evening showed Kincaid getting into the driver’s side whenever leaving the club with Andrepont.
Harvey also stated the two males attended a party after leaving the club. He argued that people attending the party did not want to give Kincaid keys to drive; yet the state wanted the jury to assume the same people would allow Andrepont, who was also highly intoxicated, to drive the vehicle.
Andrepoint remains free on bond with a new trial being set sometime in October.