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Poulsbo driver charged with vehicular homicide, assault

POULSBO — Kim M. Yeager of Poulsbo was charged with the death of Jenna Carp, 50, of Bremerton in a head-on collision on State Route 305 Dec. 9.

Prosecutors said Yeager, 46, was under the influence of alcohol at the time of the crash, and charged her with vehicular homicide and vehicular assault Monday. Her first hearing is May 17 in Kitsap County District Court.

According to a State Patrol report, Yeager was driving a 2000 Hyundai Sonata northbound on 305 when the crash occurred. Her car was weaving in and out of a ditch, struck a row of mailboxes, then crossed the center line and struck a 1993 Saturn SL 1 head-on in the southbound lane. Michael S. Eischen, 49, of Port Orchard was airlifted to Harborview Medical Center; Carp, his passenger, was declared dead at the scene. Kitsap County Coroner Greg Sandstrom said Carp died of multiple blunt force injuries to the neck and torso. Yeager was also airlifted to Harborview.

The crash occurred at George Lane in Suquamish. Eischen was wearing a seatbelt; Carp was wearing a shoulder belt, according to State Patrol. Yeager was wearing a seatbelt.

According to the investigative report, Yeager has no recollection of the day’s events. A friend made a statement to the State Patrol that the two were headed for a holiday work party in Seattle that day via the Bainbridge ferry. Yeager drove to the ferry without incident, but the friend said he suggested they not attend the party after she fell outside the terminal, suspecting she was too intoxicated. The friend drove Yeager’s car back toward Poulsbo, but left Yeager with her vehicle when she began “yanking at the steering wheel.”

Yeager was traveling north on State Route 305 at Seabold Road when another driver, traveling south, called 911 to report she was struck by a car with one headlight at 5:52 p.m. The car matched the description of Yeager’s car. A Bainbridge Island taxi driver also spotted Yeager’s vehicle, with one headlight and a flattened tire. According to the report Yeager struck a row of mailboxes at Ferncliff Avenue and Garibaldi Avenue on Bainbridge Island, driving at erratic speeds, before driving into a ditch.

The taxi driver reported the car to Cencom and continued to follow Yeager’s car, now out of the ditch, on State Route 305, attempting to keep traffic away from her vehicle. He was reporting updates to 911 when he saw Yeager crash into Eischen’s vehicle at about 6:05 p.m.

Witnesses checked on the victims in both vehicles; one reported smelling a strong odor of alcohol on Yeager. Toxicology later determined her blood alcohol content was .15.

Bainbridge Island Police, Washington State Patrol and Suquamish Police reported to the scene, as well as North Kitsap Fire and Rescue and Poulsbo Fire. Eischen is recovering from a fractured ankle, tibia, ribs, pelvis and dislocated arm. Yeager is continuing treatment at a physical rehab center in Seattle.

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