Former Kansas City Chief Rich Baldinger Charged with Misdemeanor in Woman's Death

A couple Saturdays ago, former Kansas City Chiefs offensive lineman Rich Baldinger was involved in a motor vehicle crash that left one woman dead. Baldinger played for the Chiefs from 1982 to 1993.

Marilyn L. Walters was killed when the Saturn she was riding in was in collision with a Dodge driven by Baldinger at the intersection of U.S. 40 and Bowlin Road in Blue Springs, the Missouri Highway Patrol said.

The Saturn, driven by Jerry Walters, was heading east on U.S. 40 when it was hit by the Dodge, which was going north on Bowlin Road. Jerry Walters suffered moderate injuries and was taken to a hospital for treatment.

Another woman who was a passenger in the Saturn that was hit was moderately injured.

A couple days after the wreck, media outlets around the country reported that Baldinger would not face any criminal charges connected to the incident.

Velda Cook, spokeswoman for the Jackson County Prosecutor’s office, said the crash has been ruled an accident by investigators. Cook declined further comment.

Well now, investigators say not so fast on Baldinger getting away scot-free. Via the KC Star:

Baldinger was charged Monday with operating a motor vehicle in a careless and imprudent manner, involving an accident. That is a misdemeanor.

Baldinger faces up to one year in prison and a $5,000 fine if the misdemeanor sticks. What happened with those reports that there would be no charges?

Although Jackson County authorities last month had indicated that no criminal charges would be filed against Baldinger, that was a "misunderstanding," Dickinson said.

"We had never even been presented with anything at that point in time," she said.

Despite the misunderstanding, Baldinger has to be feeling pretty lucky he didn't get a more serious charge levied against him, especially with a death involved.

I hope everything works out for all of the families involved, as well as the former Chief. This just sucks all around.

H/T NJ Chiefs Fan in the FanShots.

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