Toyota Driver Freed From Prison, Prosecutor Drops Charges

Koua Fong Lee, who was in prison for vehicular homicide, is a free man.

ByABC News
June 29, 2010, 6:28 PM

Aug. 05, 2010 — -- Koua Fong Lee, the Minnesota man jailed when his 1996 Toyota Camry sped out of control and killed three people, has won his freedom. After a judge ordered him freed pending a new trial, prosecutors announced they would not try Lee again for vehicular homicide.

Following a four-day hearing, Judge Joanne Smith had ruled Thursday afternoon there was enough evidence to grant a new trial to Lee, who had been serving an eight-year sentence. She ordered him freed pending trial.

The Ramsey County prosecutor's office then announced less than an hour later that it would not be refiling charges against Lee.

Lee was convicted of criminal vehicular homicide for a 2006 crash in which his Camry crashed into an Oldsmobile, killing driver Javis Adams, his 10-year-old son and injuring Adams' seven-year-old niece Devyn Bolton, who later died of her injuries. Lee granted an exclusive prison interview to ABC News in February, and at that time told Chief Investigative Correspondent Brian Ross that he pressed the Camry's brakes repeatedly but the car would not stop.

CLICK HERE TO WATCH BRIAN ROSS INTERVIEW DRIVER KOUA FONG LEE AND FAMILY MEMBERS OF THE CRASH VICTIMS

Earlier today Lee had rejected a plea deal from prosecutors that would have allowed him to go home a free man, but would still brand him a convicted felon.

According to ABC affiliate KSTP, Ramsey County, Minnesota prosecutors said Lee could return home to his family if he accepted their offer to plead guilty to the same felony and be released immediately. The terms of the plea would mean Lee would still be a convicted felon with 15 years of probation and his driving privileges would be suspended for 10 years.

Lee, 32, said no to the plea deal.

His defense attorneys told KSTP his reason for rejecting the deal was because he continues to maintain he was pressing the brake at the time of the accident and he is not a felon.

The hearing, which began Monday, drew scores of Lee supporters. On Monday, nearly a hundred Lee backers rallied outside the courthouse demanding his immediate release.

The hearing, which began Monday, drew scores of Lee supporters. 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