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MISTRIAL LEADS TO GUILTY PLEA ON LESSER CHARGE

SHARE MISTRIAL LEADS TO GUILTY PLEA ON LESSER CHARGE

originally charged with automobile homicide - was allowed to plead guilty to a drunken driving charge after a judge declared a mistrial this week.

Robert S. Taul, 27, was charged with being intoxicated Sept. 24, 1988, when his vehicle rolled on I-15, killing his passenger, Regina P. Beach, 36, Riverton.But during a recess in his trial this week before 3rd District Judge Frank Noel, a juror, without Noel's authorization, discussed the case with a police officer.

The judge declared a mistrial and ordered a new trial.

Prosecutor Roger Blaylock, however, offered Taul a lesser charge of driving under the influence of alcohol, a Class A misdemeanor.

Taul pleaded guilty to that charge and was scheduled for sentencing Jan. 19.