Tearful regrets over texting death?

NEWPORT BEACH, Calif. /*Martin Burt Kuehl*/, 41, was arraigned on Wednesday in Newport Beach on vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence charges.

Kuehl was allegedly text messaging with his eyes off the roadway when he struck and killed 32-year-old Martha Ovalle, as she crossed Westcliff Drive last August.

"There's no indications ... from the evidence that we have ... that some other condition caused this collision to occur," said Jason Baez, /*Orange County Deputy District Attorney*/.

Since the accident occurred, Kuehl demonstrated his remorse. He showed up to place flowers near the crosswalk where he allegedly struck Ovalle.

In court on Wednesday, Kuehl offered tearful regrets. With his attorney attempting to quiet him, Kuehl blurted out to the judge, "I'm sorry to take your time."

Kuehl is being held without bail because of allegedly violating prior probation for a burglary conviction.

Residents who live along Westcliff Drive say motorists pay no attention to pedestrians in or out of crosswalks.

"It's scary because I walk my dog here and you watch people. And, they think it's a speedway. They don't see it. They don't pay attention, it really is scary," said Lana Brenner, a resident of Newport Beach.

Kuehl will be back in court next Monday for a hearing.


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