Brittani Senser, 911 callers testify in Amy Senser trial - KMSP-TV

Brittani Senser, 911 callers testify in Amy Senser trial

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Brittani Senser and nearly a dozen 911 callers took the stand Tuesday in the Amy Senser hit-and-run trial. The callers testified about seeing the body of Anousone Phanthavong in the road, but none saw what happened.

All of the 911 callers who testified said said they could clearly see the flashing warning lights on Phanthavong's car and had no problem driving around it.

Jurors also heard testimony from Brittani Senser, Joe Senser's 28-year-old daughter from a previous marriage, who urged Amy Senser to come forward as the driver involved in the crash.

Brittani Senser began her testimony in tears, telling jurors she was "furious" once people began speculating that she, not Amy Senser, had been behind the wheel.

Brittani Senser said she learned about the crash two days after it happened when her father told her, but she assumed the Minnesota State Patrol knew who was driving. When she later heard on the news that investigators didn't know and heard she may be a suspect, she called the family's attorney, Eric Nelson.

"I said, 'If you and Amy and my dad don't say who was driving, I will,'" she said.

After that call, Amy Senser gave a written admission.

Brittani Senser's testimony is expected to continue on Wednesday morning. The prosecution has about 40 witnesses to get through, so Amy Senser wasn't expected to testify Tuesday.

The first three witnesses called to the stand were 911 callers, who described seeing Phanthavong's body in the middle of the road.

Senser dabbed her eyes after seeing autopsy pictures of the victim's body, and the doctor who performed the exam explained that he had between 25 and 30 visible bruises, cuts and injuries. He also suffered internal injuries to his liver and kidneys, but the witness said the massive brain injury he sustained likely killed him within seconds.

Another witness described seeing a Mercedes SUV driving erratically with damage on its front end near the accident scene 45 minutes after the crash, and said a woman with sandy blonde hair was driving. When shown Amy Senser's mug shot, that witness said her hair matched the color she saw.

Many of Phanthavong's family members were in court on Tuesday, but some left during the autopsy testimony while others sobbed.

Senser is facing three criminal vehicular homicide charges in the hit-and-run crash.

Prosecutors are expected to argue Senser fled because she had been drinking or was under the influence of a controlled substance, but Nelson says no witnesses saw her drink that night.

"There will be no evidence that Ms. Senser consumed alcohol, he said.

When Nelson began his opening statement on Monday, he said Phantavhong's death "without doubt, was tragic," but he said it is not the primary issue of the trial. Instead, he said the primary issue is whether Amy Senser knew she hit a person or another vehicle and that her driving showed excessive disregard for the safety of others.

"You will reach the conclusion that Ms. Senser did not know she hit a person," he told the jury.


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