KANSAS CITY, Mo. — A Kansas man has been charged with two counts of first-degree involuntary manslaughter for a crash that killed a pedestrian, a Kansas City police officer and his K9 partner.
Jerron Allen Lightfoot, 18, of Tonganoxie, Kansas, told a Johnson County judge he plans to hire an attorney during his first court appearance on the charges.
According to court records, Lightfoot was speeding the night of the crash, ran through a red light and struck the officer’s vehicle.
Officer James Muhlbauer, a 20-year veteran of the department, and K9 officer Champ were patrolling near the intersection of Truman Road and Benton Boulevard on Feb. 15.
Video from the area of the crash showed the police officer was traveling eastbound on Truman Road and had a green light at the intersection, court records say. Lightfoot’s white Ford was traveling southbound on Benton Boulevard at 85 mph and ran through the intersection, striking the patrol car.
That crash caused a second collision with a pedestrian. Emergency crews pronounced the pedestrian dead at the scene. The identity of this person has not been released yet, but the victim has been described as a man in his 50s.
The crash knocked Muhlbauer unconscious in the driver’s seat, and he was taken to an area hospital with critical injuries. Champ was in the backseat of the patrol vehicle at the time of the crash. Muhlbauer later died at the hospital. Champ was killed at the scene.
Lightfoot told investigators he attempted to hit the brakes at the light but said his brakes went out, estimating he was going between 50-55 mph.
But detectives reviewed data from Lightfoot’s vehicle, which showed he was driving 89.7 mph 1.5 seconds before the crash and his brakes were working.
He denied drinking or doing drugs before the crash, but investigators took a buccal swab. Those results weren’t available yet, according to the charging document.
On Friday afternoon, Lightfoot posted a $30,000 bond at 10%, which means he only need to put down $3,000. As long as he meets a few other conditions, he could soon be out of custody.
Conditions of his release include him not being allowed to drive any motor vehicles and he would be on house arrest. He is scheduled to be in court again on Feb. 27.
Funeral arrangements for Muhlbauer have not yet been announced.