Caitlyn Jenner may face manslaughter charges

An investigation by Los Angeles Sheriff’s deputies into a multi-vehicle accident involving Caitlyn Jenner found that she was driving unsafely and, according to LA County Sheriff’s Department spokeswoman Nicole Nashida, at a speed “unsafe for the prevailing road conditions.” Jenner could face a vehicular manslaughter charge, which carries a maximum sentence of one year in jail.

According to car accident lawyer Thomas Soldan, “just because Jenner may not face severe criminal charges does not mean that she will escape a civil suit. In fact, the evidence indicating that she was driving too fast for conditions, or engaging in other behavior to show a wanton disregard for the rights of others may even make punitive damages possible.”

On February 7th, Jenner was hauling an off-road vehicle behind her SUV on Pacific Coast Highway when she rear-ended two vehicles, a Lexus and a Prius, at a stop light. Jenner was unable to stop in time and pushed the two vehicles into the intersection. The driver of the Lexus, Kim Howe, was killed in a head-on collision.

According to accident reconstructionist Daniel W. Vohmof, the added weight of the towed vehicle made it difficult for Jenner to stop quickly and likely contributed to the accident.

Caitlyn Jenner, formerly Bruce, rose to fame during the 1976 Olympics where she won the decathlon, gaining renown as “the world’s greatest athlete.” Jenner married Kris Kardashian in 1991 and once again became a household name because of E!’s Keeping Up With the Kardashians. This spring, Jenner underwent a public gender transition, emerging as Caitlyn. She currently stars on the show, I Am Caitlyn, which follows her through her transformation.

Although a vehicular manslaughter conviction could mean jail time, it is unlikely that Jenner would face any as she has no prior record. Instead, she may face a fine or even a lessened charge.

Several related parties are seeking damages from Jenner, including the stepchildren of Kim Howe. Their lawsuit does not specify an amount but cites gross negligence by Jenner and “great losses” suffered.