Hearing delayed until Nov. 7 in Kalamazoo bike crash case

KALAMAZOO, MICH. - A preliminary examination for the Battle Creek man charged in a June bicycling accident that killed five cyclists is rescheduled for November.

Charles Pickett Jr., 50, was scheduled to appear for the hearing Wednesday, but it will be held in a full-day session Nov. 7.

Kalamazoo County Chief Assistant Prosecutor Carrie Klein said the hearing was delayed to allow for more than just a half day. The examination, set before District Judge Vincent Westra, will determine if enough evidence exists to send the case to Kalamazoo County Circuit Court for trial.

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Prosecutors and Pickett's attorney, Alan Koenig, were to meet Wednesday morning with the judge in private to discuss preliminary matters in the case, but the afternoon hearing already has been adjourned.

Pickett is charged with five counts of operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing death, five counts of second-degree murder and four counts of operating while intoxicated causing serious injury.

Investigators have alleged that Pickett was driving the vehicle that crashed into a group of seven cyclists during a June 7 ride on North Westnedge Avenue in Kalamazoo County's Cooper Township. Five people died and four were injured.

Pickett has undergone a mental exam and was ruled competent to stand trial.

Battle Creek Enquirer


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