Linda Woodman trial in assault, manslaughter begins

AUSTIN (KXAN) — The trial began Tuesday for a 61-year-old woman accused of killing one person and critically injuring another after crashing her car on Guadalupe Street. Linda Woodman is charged with aggravated assault and manslaughter.

Two hours after being released from Seton’s University Medical Center Brackenridge on Feb. 19, 2012, authorities say Woodman lost control of her SUV on Guadalupe Street near 31st Street. Authorities say Woodman crashed into a car and then drove up onto the sidewalk. She allegedly hit two people walking, killing one of them.

Dik Van Meerten, 61, died there, and Sarah Lee Parker, 21, sustained serious injuries. Witnesses testified Tuesday about what they saw that night. Parker took the stand later in the day.

Woodman’s defense attorney, Joe Sawyer, blames the hospital staff for giving Woodman large dosages of morphine and Percocet before releasing her to a cab. Woodman was admitted to the hospital the day before the crash after suffering from a seizure.

Cameras weren’t allowed inside the courtroom but family members of  Meerten were there along with dozens of others.

The trial is expected to continue Wednesday. provides commenting to allow for constructive discussion on the stories we cover. In order to comment here, you acknowledge you have read and agreed to our Terms of Service. Users who violate these terms, including use of vulgar language or racial slurs, will be banned. If you see an inappropriate comment, please flag it for our moderators to review.

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