BAY MINETTE, Ala. (WKRG) — Looking much different than the last time we saw him, Tyler Henderson, 31, appeared in court Thursday to hear evidence against him in the deadly crash last August that took the life of Mt. Vernon Police Officer Ivan Lopez.
Prosecutor Teresa Heinz painted a picture of what she called reckless behavior. “The amount of alcohol that was consumed. The excessive speeds that he was driving at the time.”
According to testimony at the time of the crash Henderson’s blood alcohol level was .23. That is almost three times the legal limit. His top speed, as he approached the intersection of County Road 36 and Highway 59 in Summerdale, was 102 miles per hour. Before impact, the onboard computer showed his speed at 86 miles per hour. “He was at full throttle at 5 seconds, three seconds before the collision,” said Heinz.
Lopez was on his way home that August night traveling south on Highway 59. Henderson had spent the day with friends and was driving a buddy home to Robertsdale when investigators say he blew through a stop sign, crossed the five-lane highway, crashing into Lopez and killing him instantly.
“Even though Tyler is charged with murder it’s not a situation where he ever intended, of course, to hurt anyone. He is feeling it for the family who lost a loved one for no good reason,” said defense attorney John Beck.
Officer Lopez’s family was also in court listening to every word of testimony.
This case now goes to a Baldwin County Grand Jury. Henderson remains free on bond.