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Driver Arraigned On Manslaughter Charges In Golf Team Crash

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KALKASKA (WWJ/AP) - A driver who authorities say was involved in a two-van crash that killed her 27-year-old daughter, a 31-year-old high school golf coach and an 18-year-old student has been arraigned on manslaughter charges.

Rhonda Mitchell of Kalkaska was arraigned Monday in 87th District Court on three counts of manslaughter with a motor vehicle, three counts of a moving violation causing death and one count of child abuse. The 45-year-old is due back in court on July 31 for a pretrial hearing.

The Grayling High School golf team was headed to an invitational tournament in Traverse City on April 29 when the accident occurred in Kalkaska County’s Excelsior Township, about 15 miles west of Grayling.

According to police, coach Jason Potter was driving a van carrying team members when he ran a stop sign and collided with another van. Both vans rolled after the crash.

Police said Mitchell, who was driving the other van, was going at least 77-mph in a 55-mph zone. She also tested positive for marijuana and morphine, a prescription painkiller, according to police.

Eighteen-year-old Louis Menard, who wasn’t wearing a seatbelt, was killed after being ejected from the golf team’s van, police said. Potter and Cassandra Stapleton, Mitchell’s daughter, were also killed in the crash. Six others, including Mitchell, were hurt.

A police investigation found that both Mitchell and Potter were at fault.

TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2013 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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