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Nestande Convicted Of Homicide In West Austin Hit And Run
Gabrielle Nestande was found guilty Thursday of criminally negligent homicide for the 2011 West Austin hit and run death of Courtney Griffin. But the jury found her not guilty of failure to stop and render aid.
The jury had been deliberating since Wednesday afternoon. On Thursday the jury gave the judge a note that said they were having difficulty reaching a decision on a verdict. The judge called everyone into the courtroom and gave the jury further instructions, urging them to try to reach a verdict and said the case could be retried again with a new jury if they couldn't finish the job.
The jury originally had three choices - intoxicated manslaughter, manslaughter and criminally negligent homicide. They were also deciding on a separate charge of failure to stop and render aid.
Nestande cried as the guilty verdict was read.
Nestande struck and killed Courtney Griffin with her car in West Austin back in May 2011 after leaving a Rainey Street bar. Griffin was found dead in the driveway of a home.
The sentencing phase starts immediately. Criminally negligent homicide is punishable by up to two years in state jail. But the jury found that Nestande used her car as a deadly weapon, which bumps the possible jail sentence up to 2-10 years.
Sentencing begins with opening statements and evidence presented by both sides.
Courtney Griffin's father testified that his daughter loved animals, children and Austin, saying she had 512 (Austin's area code) tattooed on her wrist. Nestande's father also testified, saying his daughter had always cared about other people and had been involved in volunteer work since she was a child.
The judge will let the jury go home for the night. They will begin deliberations on Friday after hearing closing arguments.
Previous stories -
Emotional Day 1st Day For West Austin Hit And Run Trial - http://www.keyetv.com/news/features/top-stories/stories/emotional-day-1st-day-west-austin-hit-run-trial-6897.shtml
Gabrielle Nestande Takes The Stand In Hit And Run Manslaughter Trial - http://www.keyetv.com/news/features/raw-news/stories/vid_70.shtml
Week 2 Begins In West Austin Hit And Run Trial - http://www.keyetv.com/news/features/top-stories/stories/vid_7000.shtml
We will update this story as we learn more.