DA: Death of drunken walker not homicide

June 27, 2008 10:32:20 AM PDT
A woman who was drunk when she struck and killed a popular high school teacher as he walked along a dark road will not be charged in his death. The prosecutor says the man was drunk, too, and stepped in front of the car. Lehigh County District Attorney James Martin says 25-year-old Jennifer Gehringer, of Bethlehem, could not have avoided hitting Parkland High School gym teacher and former wrestling coach John Toggas, even if she had been sober.

The prosecutor says Gehringer will be charged with drunken driving, but not vehicular homicide or manslaughter.

A few hours before his death on April 18, Toggas was arrested for drunken driving. On the way home, he got out of the car his wife was driving and suddenly stepped into the lane of travel, where Gehringer hit him.