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Double-fatal OWI case goes to jury

MERRILL, Wis (WSAU-Wheeler News)  We could find out today whether a Merrill woman is guilty of causing a high-speed drunk driving crash that killed two of her friends 23 months ago.

Jurors are scheduled to hear closing arguments this morning in the trial of Ashley Baumann. Jury deliberations will begin soon afterward.

The 26-year-old Baumann faces seven criminal charges for allegedly driving her van at almost 100-miles-an-hour before it rolled into a field, killing Misty Glisch and Jessica Hartwig. The defense contends that Hartwig's sister was driving the vehicle -- and not Baumann. Prosecutors have tried to show that Baumann was indeed the driver, pointing to cell-phone photos before the crash which showed her behind the wheel. They also said hair on the driver's side was Baumann's -- although the defense claims that wind from a nearby rescue chopper could have blown that hair there.

A crime lab analyst said Baumann's blood alcohol level appeared to be three-and-a-half times the legal limit about the time of the crash. It was almost twice the legal limit five hours after the incident.

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