Witnesses testify about cell phone records in O'Neal hearing - KSFY News - Sioux Falls, SD News, Weather, Sports

Judge hears witnesses testify about cell phone records in Brent O'Neal motions hearing

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Another day in court for Brent O'Neal. 

He's been indicted on two counts of manslaughter for a crash that killed motorcyclist Phil Sorensen.    

Tuesday, the judge upheld the first and second degree manslaughter indictments.    

And Wednesday, he was expected to address whether O'Neal was in police custody when he was questioned by police, and should have been read his rights.    

The judge says he needs more time to re-watch patrol car surveillance video before making a decision to suppress the use of the video during the trial.  And he wants to take some more time to get a feel of the conversation with police to determine if O'Neal was in custody and should have been read his rights. 

The judge was expected to rule on the issue of whether O'Neal was considered in police custody at the time he was being questioned and therefore should have been told he had the right to remain silent.  

O'Neal is accused of texting and speeding, and causing a crash that killed motorcyclist Phil Sorensen.    

It was originally reported he was driving at speeds in excess of 60 miles per hour but witnesses in court said it was about 47.   

And Wednesday brought more questions than answers.     

The court heard more from witnesses about what information was retrieved from O'Neal's cell phone. The report shows no texts were sent from O'Neal's phone at the time of the accident.

Sioux Falls Police detective Jason Montgomery said the type of scan they did on O'Neal's phone did not look at deleted messages. But he did admit it's possible to run a different type of report to retrieve deleted texts.    

And so the defense team argued the court shouldn't try O'Neal on the basis of texting and driving because the state couldn't prove he was texting.

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