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A witness to the fatal June 2010 car accident involving 40-year-old former "Melrose Place" actress Amy Locane-Bovenizer took the stand in a New Jersey courtroom on Oct. 10 to testify to the circumstances leading up to the collision. The actress was reportedly driving drunk on the day of the accident. She is accused of crashing her SUV into a sedan in Montgomery Township, which caused the death of a 60-year-old woman. She faces up to 30 years in prison.

According to witness testimony, the fatal collision wasn't the first one the actress was involved in that day. The witness stated that the actress rear-ended her van in Princeton Township, after which the witness confronted her, claiming to find the actress glassy-eyed. The witness claims to have accused the defendant of being drunk, but said Locane-Bovenizer drove away. At that point, the witness said she asked another driver to dial 911, and then followed the SUV in an attempt to gain Locane-Bouvenizer's attention or the attention of police so that a drunk driving charge could be made.

The witness testified that she trailed the actress until the second accident occurred. Police believe the actress was driving about 20 mph above the speed limit at the time of the accident.

The defense counters the witness' allegations with charges of vigilantism. Even though the actress had a blood-alcohol content that was allegedly higher than the legal limit at the time of the accident, the defense contends that the accident may never had occurred had the witness not scared the actress by attempting to grab the keys from the SUV and then proceeding to chase her. The defense stated that the actress tried to give her cellphone to the witness to call police at the earlier accident, but that her offer was refused.

The question of causation is at the center of the defense of the actress on charges of intoxicated manslaughter. For New Jersey residents, drunk driving charges are serious ones that can lead to possible jail time. But defendants have a right to stand up for their rights.

Source: NJ.com, "Witness testifies Melrose Place actress 'was one of the most intoxicated people I've ever seen'," Eugene Paik, Oct.10, 2012

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