Renton man pleads not guilty to vehicular homicide in Federal Way crash

December 27, 2013 

A Renton man pleaded not guilty to vehicular homicide Thursday, in connection with an Interstate 5 crash in Federal Way that killed a Sumner man last year.

Stephen J. Palmer, 22, was released on his own recognizance on the conditions that he not use alcohol or any non-prescribed drugs or drive without a valid license and ignition interlock device.

Prosecutors said Palmer was impaired by alcohol and marijuana when he hit a guardrail while heading south on the freeway in November 2012.

Troopers said several vehicles were involved in the resulting crash, including a tanker truck driven by 68-year-old Joseph Bartkowski, who swerved to dodge Palmer’s vehicle.

Bartkowski died when the tanker truck, carrying aviation fuel, hit a barrier wall and caught fire.

alexis.krell@ thenewstribune.com

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