Geske ordered to stand trial for fatal crash
June accident killed two teens in Ashwaubenon
By MIKE HOEFT • firstname.lastname@example.org • August 30, 2008
A 45-year-old Ledgeview woman accused of street racing her Porsche and killing two teens in a June 3 crash in Ashwaubenon was ordered Friday to stand trial.
Prosecutors think Anrietta "Monique" Geske was traveling more than 90 mph while racing another car on South Oneida Street when she ran a red light and broadsided the victims' car. Ashley Britsch-Knetzger and Talhia Heroux, both 18, were killed in the crash.
About 50 people many of them friends or family members of the two women filled the courtroom, where after about one hour of testimony from a state Crime Lab official, Brown County Court Commissioner Christopher Paquet found probable cause to bind Geske over for trial.
Geske appeared in court in a wheelchair wearing a green prison uniform. She is recovering from injuries suffered in the crash.
Laura Liddicoat, a forensic toxicologist with the state Crime Lab, testified Geske's blood-alcohol level taken two hours after the crash was 0.072 percent, just short of the 0.08 percent threshold for legal intoxication in Wisconsin. Adjusting for alcohol eliminated from the body over time, her blood-alcohol level would have been about 0.10 percent at the time of the crash, Liddicoat said.
A second blood test determined Geske had two antidepressant drugs in her system: fluoxetine, often known by the brand name Prozac, and venlafaxine, known by the brand name Effexor. Liddicoat said the drugs would have an added effect when combined with alcohol.
Brown County Assistant District Attorney Tom Coaty said the evidence proved probable cause for reckless homicide, homicide by intoxicated use of a vehicle as well as reckless endangerment.
"Her actions served as a danger to the community," Coaty said.
Geske's attorney, Jerome Buting, said the only concrete evidence of intoxication was that of 0.072 percent, and the rest were nothing more than estimates. He also said no evidence was presented to show utter disregard of human life, a requirement for the reckless endangerment charge.
Detective Lt. Jody Crocker of the Ashwaubenon Public Safety Department told news media later that a jury will hear from both sides.
"We feel it was a homicide. This was about speed, about alcohol and about recklessness," he said.
Geske is scheduled to enter a plea Sept. 15 on two counts of first-degree reckless homicide, two counts of homicide by intoxicated use of a motor vehicle, two counts of homicide by intoxicated use of a motor vehicle with a prohibited alcohol concentration and one count of first-degree reckless endangerment.