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DRAPER — A man charged with murder after police say he deliberately ran a red light and crashed into oncoming traffic has been ordered to stand trial.
Bill Robert Thompson, 44, is accused of running a red light at Lone Peak Parkway and 12300 South on May 8, causing a seven-car accident. Susan Madsen, 43, was killed in the crash, and seven others were injured.
Thompson was charged later that month with murder, a first-degree felony; DUI and two counts of aggravated assault, third-degree felonies; seven counts of DUI, a class A misdemeanor; and two counts of assault and two counts of domestic violence in the presence of a child, class B misdemeanors.
Third District Judge Charlene Barlow ordered Thompson on Tuesday to stand trial on all charges but one, a count of domestic violence in the presence of a child, which was dismissed.
Prosecutors said in a brief filed earlier this month that Thompson showed "depraved indifference" as he ploughed into the intersection, allegedly fleeing a fight with his wife in a drunken rage. Thompson is also accused of repeatedly hitting a female roommate and neighbors who tried to intervene before speeding off in his truck.
Thompson's lawyers argue that the Draper man's actions, while "callous" and highly dangerous, were not specifically intended to kill anyone. Thompson was too intoxicated to understand he was creating a potential deadly situation.
Salt Lake County District Attorney Sim Gill emphasized at the time charges were filed that Thompson was allegedly traveling at 60 mph, pushing the gas pedal "as far as it would go" when he was just 175 feet away from the intersection.
Thompson's attorneys intend to appeal Barlow's decision in a hearing scheduled for Feb. 10.