Mayor, Senate candidate not guilty of leaving crash scene

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — A jury has found a Montana mayor and Democratic U.S. Senate candidate not guilty of leaving the scene of a crash after rear-ending another vehicle earlier this year.

The Independent Record reported Thursday that Helena Mayor Wilmot Collins acknowledged crashing into the vehicle May 20 but pleaded not guilty to leaving the scene.

Officials say the jury delivered its verdict Thursday in Justice Court in Helena.

Prosecutors say Collins rear-ended 35-year-old Kimberly Doherty while both were attempting to make a right turn and Doherty had to chase after Collins who continued driving.

Collins said his foot slipped and Doherty gave no indication a collision occurred.

Collins says he told her he would pay for any repairs.

Authorities fined Collins $50.

Collins’ attorney Brian Miller said the charge was ridiculous.

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Information from: Independent Record, http://www.helenair.com