Archive for Thursday, March 11, 2004

Sentencing hearing is continued

March 11, 2004

Due to a scheduling conflict, a sentencing hearing for a man convicted of multiple traffic offenses was continued Thursday, March 4 in Leavenworth County District Court.

Brett Bidnick is the second driver in an Oct. 2003 fatality accident, which claimed the life of 22-year-old Basehor man Kevin Swope.

In a separate case stemming from a Feb. 2003 traffic accident in Basehor at the intersection of U.S. Highway 24/40 and 155th Street, Bidnick was charged and convicted of driving under the influence and driving with a suspended license. Both municipal court convictions were upheld under appeal.

Bidnick was scheduled for sentencing Thursday morning in Judge Frederick Stewart's courtroom. However, the hearing has been rescheduled for 9:30 a.m. Thursday, April 1.

Basehor police said the driving under the influence conviction is Bidnick's second. Basehor prosecutor Mike Kelly said a second driving under the influence conviction carries a mandatory five-day jail sentence.

Kelly said he is researching Bidnick's past criminal history and will make a sentencing recommendation to Judge Stewart during the April hearing.

Basehor police said Bidnick misled officers to believe his passenger was the driver during the accident Feb. 2003 accident in Basehor. After questioning, police determined Bidnick the driver and arrested him.

Last month, Bidnick agreed to a plea bargain in the case against him from the Oct. 2003 accident, which claimed the life of Kevin Swope, the father of an infant son. On Oct. 9, Bidnick and Swope's vehicles collided at the intersection of Kansas Highway 32 and 166th Street.

Bidnick fled the scene on foot before police or emergency medical services arrived. Ed Gillette, Bidnick's attorney, said his client left the accident scene because he was "in a state of shock," and in need of medical treatment.

He was cited in district court with failing to render assistance to an injured person, failure to report an injury accident, leaving the scene of a fatality accident and driving with a suspended license, all misdemeanors.

In February of this year, he pleaded no contest to leaving the scene of a fatality accident. In exchange for the plea, prosecutors dismissed the remaining charges.

He was fined the maximum penalty allowable by law for his part in the crash, $500, and paid $60 in court costs.

Commenting has been disabled for this item.