See also: Delonna Rokes CFPD Report

DELONNA ROKES
CIVIL TRIAL DEPOSITION


Page 4

1 DELONNA ROKES,

2 being produced, sworn as hereinafter certified and

3 examined on behalf of the Plaintiffs?Defendants

4 Farrell, testified as follows:

5 DIRECT EXAMINATION

6 BY MR. LIABO:

7 Q. Would you tell us you name and address

8 please?

9 A. Delonna, D-e-l-o-n-n-a, Rokes,

10 R-o-k-e-s, 3807 West 12th Street, Cedar Falls, Iowa

11 50613.

12 Q. What is your Social Security number?

13 A. xxx-xx-xxxx.

14 Q. What is your date of birth?

15 A. 6-27-65.

16 Q. Are you currently employed?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Where do you work?

19 A. Parts Company of America.

20 Q. What is Parts Company of America.

21 A. It's owned by a company called Granger.

22 Q. The one here in town is a phone center for customer

23 service type purposes. Parts, basically, for

24 industrial and commercial equipment.

25 Q. Do you or any member of your family have

 

Page 5

1 any ownership interest in that business?

2 A. No.

3 Q. How long have you worked for Parts

4 Company of America?

5 A. Five years.

6 Q. What's your educational background?

7 A. Latest?

8 Q. When did you graduate from high school?

9 A. 1983.

10 Q. And what high school did you go to?

11 A. Rudd-Rockford-Marble Rock.

12 Q. And did you have post high school

13 education?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. What post high school education have you

16 had?

17 A. NIACC, Northern Iowa Area Community

18 College in Mason City, and then the University of

19 Northern Iowa. I graduated there in 1987.

20 Q. What did you receive your degree in?

21 A. Social sciences. Fashion merchandising

22 was in the area.

23 Q. Have you had any education since

24 graduating from UNI?

25 A. No.

 

Page 6

1 Q. Have you ever worked in the area that

2 you received your training in?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Where?

5 A. The Limited, Donaldson's, Casual Corner.

6 Q. When were you and Tracy Rokes married?

7 A. In 1990, September 1st.

8 Q. How many children do you have?

9 A. Two.

10 Q. What are their names and ages?

11 A. Alexis, A-l-e-x-i-s, she is six, and

12 Natalie, N-a-t-a-l-i-e, she is three.

13 Q. On October 4th, 1996, you and Tracy went

14 to Brooster's in the early evening, is that

15 correct?

16 A. Correct.

17 Q. Prior to going to Brooster's, what had

18 you done that day?

19 A. During the day I went out to lunch with

20 a couple of my friends, and probably about

21 4 o'clock or 4:30 the came over to my house, we

22 were waiting for Tracy to get home, and we all have

23 small children and they were playing.

24 Q. You had not been working that day?

25 A. I do not work on Fridays, no.

 

Page 7

1 Q. What was the name of your friends?

2 A. Tracey Braun, T-r-a-c-e-y, and

3 B-r-a-u-n, and Connie, C-o-n-n-i-e, Young

4 Y-o-u-n-g,

5 Q. When had Tracey and Connie arrived at

6 your house?

7 A. Tracey arrived first, probably around 4

8 or 4:30. Connie arrived somewhere between 4:30 and

9 5.

10 Q. What did you three do before Tracy Rokes

11 arrived at home?

12 A. We were just sitting around and the kids

13 were playing, talking.

14 Q. Did any of you have anything to drink?

15 A. Tracey Braun and I both had a couple

16 of drinks, yes.

17 Q. What were you drinking?

18 A. Beer.

19 Q. What are your drinking habits, or what

20 were you drinking habits, prior to October 4th,

21 1996?

22 A. As far as?

23 Q. How frequently would you drink?

24 A. Probably once or twice a week.

25 Q. Did you and Tracy, your husband often

 

Page 8

1 go out together to a pub or a bar and drink?

2 A. Probably once a week, at the most.

3 Q. Have you ever observed Tracy, you

4 husband, drunk?

5 A. Drunk? I don't know. Have I seen him

6 drunk?

7 Q. Have you ever seen him drunk?

8 A. Probably.

9 Q. Do you recall the last time prior to

10 October 4th, 1996, you've seen him drunk?

11 A. No.

12 Q. What does he look like when he's drunk?

13 A. I don't know. I mean --

14 Q. What about him tells you that he's drunk

15 or hat causes you to form the opinion that he's

16 drunk?

17 A. Maybe slurred speech. About ready to go

18 to sleep.

19 Q. Gets sleepy?

20 A. Very.

21 Q. Does drinking alcohol make him sleepy?

22 A. Depends.

23 Q. One of his responses to drinking that

24 you've observed is sleepiness?

25 A. It depends on how much you're talking as

 

Page 9

1 far as drinking.

2 Q. You indicated that one of the factors

3 that you considered as forming your opinion that he

4 was drunk was that he was about to go to sleep?

5 A. And then I've also seen him when he's

6 drunk where he's very active.

7 Q. It depends on the time of the evening

8 and how long he's been drinking?

9 A. Exactly.

10 Q. Did anybody else join you at your house

11 on October 4th, 1996 before your husband Tracy

12 arrived?

13 A. I don't know. Scott Braun did come to

14 our house. I don't know if it was before or after

15 Tracy was there.

16 Q. Did Craig Young ever show up at your

17 house?

18 A. I don't know.

19 Q. At some point Tracy arrived at home,

20 Tracy, your husband?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. Okay. And do you recall what time that

23 was?

24 A. Not for sure, no.

25 Q. Do you recall if he ate anything at home

 

Page 10

1 after he got there?

2 A. Yeah, I know he did eat. I had made my

3 daughter some french fried and chicken nuggets, I

4 believe it was, which they didn't eat, so I know he

5 at that for sure. Plus we had chips and whatnot

6 on the counter. I don't know if he had any of

7 those. But I know he did eat the girl's good,

8 because they didn't eat it.

9 Q. All right. Had arrangements been made

10 in advance to go to Brooster's? I mean, that was

11 the plan that you would gather at your house and go

12 to Brooster's?

13 A. The plan wasn't made until probably

14 4 o'clock in the afternoon.

15 Q. I mean, was this just as spontaneous

16 gathering?

17 A. Yes.

18 Q. Tracey and Connie just showed up at your

19 house?

20 A. I had gone to lunch with Tracey. Connie

21 showed up at our house, yes.

22 Q. And there were discussions at your

23 house?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. And plans were made after that?

 

Page 11

1 A. Right.

2 MR. BEVEL: You have to let him finish.

3 THE WITNESS: All right.

4 Q. At some point in time you all left your

5 house and went to Brooster's?

6 A. Right.

7 Q. And as far as you know, it was Tracey

8 Braun Connie Young and Tracey's husband?

9 A. Yes.

10 Q. And, of course you husband, Tracy Rokes?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. And you?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. What time did you leave the house?

15 A. I don't know an exact time.

16 Q. Approximately.

17 A. 7:30, quarter to 8.

18 Q. By the time you left your house, how

19 many beers had you had to drink?

20 A. I don't know for sure.

21 Q. At least two?

22 A. Two or three.

23 Q. Do you know if Tracy Rokes, your

24 husband, had any thing to drink?

25 A. Do I know if he did?

 

Page 12

1 Q. Right.

2 A. I know he did not.

3 Q. How do you know that?

4 A. Because he never went to get a beer and

5 he was asked if he wanted one and he said no.

6 Q. Were you feeling the effects of the two

7 or three beers that you had had by the time you

8 left the house?

9 A. I don't know. Probably not.

10 Q. Did Tracy Rokes drive your vehicle?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Did you go straight to Brooster"s?

13 A. Yes.

14 Q. Didn't stop anywhere in between?

15 A. No.

16 Q. Okay. What time did you arrive at

17 Brooster's?

18 A. Again, I don't know an exact time.

19 Approximately 7:45, 8 o'clock.

20 Q. What does it normally take, 15 or 20

21 minutes to get to Brooster's from you house?

22 A. Fifteen.

23 Q. When you arrived at Brooster's, what did

24 you do?

25 A. Walked in.

 

Page 13

1 Q. What happened then?

2 A. Connie Young and Craig Young were both

3 there and another couple and some of our friends,

4 Lisa and Bill Bradford. And Lisa and Connie were

5 sitting in an area, so I went over and joined them.

6 Q. Okay. Where was your husband, Tracy?

7 A. He didn't walk back to where they were

8 sitting with me. He ran into a friend of ours that

9 we know and he stopped and talked with him.

10 Q. And who was that?

11 A. Dave Claus.

12 Q. Was Brooster's a place where you would

13 frequently go to socialize?

14 A. Not frequently, no.

15 Q. Form time to time?

16 A. From time to time.

17 Q. I understand that your group was on the

18 Brooster's side of the building for a period of

19 time and then moved over to the Celebration's side

20 of the building?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. While you were on the Brooster's side of

23 the building, did you see Tracy, your husband,

24 drink anything of an alcoholic nature?

25 A. I don't know. I'm sure he probably --

 

Page 14

1 yeah, I'm sure he probably did have something. But

2 I mean as far as do I distinctly remember

3 looking at him and watching him drink a beer, no.

4 Q. So you cannot testify as to the number

5 of beers that he might have had?

6 A. I do not know.

7 Q. You don't know whether it was two beers,

8 three beers, four beers, whatever?

9 A. I don't know.

10 Q. Okay. you were busy talking with

11 others?

12 A. Correct.

13 Q. Did you have yourself any beer or

14 alcohol while on the Brooster's side of the

15 building?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. How much did you have to drink?

18 A. I didn't count.

19 Q. Give me your best estimate.

20 A. Maybe five. On the Brooster's side?

21 Q. On the Brooster's side.

22 A. On the Brooster's side. Probably two to

23 three.

24 Q. Were these glasses of beer or cans?

25 A. Bottles.

 

Page 15

1 Q. Bottles. Twelve-ounce bottles?

2 A. I don't know how they're packaged.

3 Q. Whatever the standard size is?

4 A. Correct.

5 Q. All right. Then you went -- and because

6 you were socializing with your friends and Tracy

7 was over talking to this friends, you just have no

8 way of knowing how much beer he consumed on the

9 Brooster's side?

10 A. I do not know.

11 Q. Whether it was more than you or less

12 than you or whatever?

13 A. I do not know.

14 Q. Okay. You then went to -- at some point

15 in time to the Celebration's side, is that correct?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. There was a band over there?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. Do you recall about how long you had

20 been at Brooster's before you went over to the

21 Celebration's side?

22 A. I don't know for sure. Probably an

23 hour, hour and a half.

24 Q. Were you feeling the effects -- let me

25 back up a minute. By the, as I understand it, you

 

Page 16

1 had had two to three beers at home and what did you

2 say, four or five on the Brooster's side?

3 A. On the Brooster's side, two or three.

4 Q. Two or three, excuse me. So you had had

5 four to six beers total that evening by then?

6 A. Approximately.

7 Q. Okay. Were you feeling the effects of

8 those four to six beers when you went from the

9 Brooster's side to the Celebration's side?

10 A. I don't recall.

11 Q. You just don't know whether you were or

12 not?

13 A. Well, probably.

14 Q. Over on the Celebration's side, did you

15 have more beer to drink?

16 A. I had more. As far as how many, I don't

17 know. Two or three.

18 Q. Okay. Is that just a guess?

19 A. That's just a guess.

20 Q. Did you see Tracy, your husband

21 drinking any beer on the Celebration's side?

22 A. I don't remember. I don't know.

23 Q. So you don't know one way or the other

24 what, if anything, he had to drink on the

25 Celebration's side?

 

Page 17

1 A. Do you want me to assume?

2 Q. Well, I want to know what you observed.

3 Did you see him drink any beer on the Celebration's

4 side?

5 A. I can't remember.

6 Q. Okay. Just for purposes of your

7 testimony here today, can you tell me whether Tracy

8 and any beer, two beers, three beers, four beers,

9 five beers on the Celebration's side?

10 A. I can't tell you an amount, but I'm

11 sure -- I'm assuming he did have -- at least he was

12 drinking, yes.

13 Q. But you can't tell me whether that was

14 one beer, two beers, three beers, four bees, five

15 beers?

16 A. No, I don't know.

17 Q. You can't tell me whether he had more to

18 drink than you did?

19 A. That I don't know.

20 Q. Okay. What time did you leave -- by the

21 way, when you decided to go home that evening, did

22 you leave from the Celebration's side of the place?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. Okay. What time did you leave?

25 A. Again, I don't know an exact time.

 

Page 18

1 Q. Can you give me an approximation?

2 A. Approximately 10:45, 10:50.

3 Q. Okay. Were you drunk by the time you

4 left?

5 A. I was never tested. I don't know.

6 Q. Were you feeling drunk?

7 A. I don't know. Had I been drinking?

8 Yes.

9 Q. In your own opinion, were you drunk?

10 A. "Drunk" is a very broad term. I don't

11 know, I mean, yes I had been drinking. Could I

12 feel the effects? Yes.

13 Q. Are you aware that Tracey Braun is of

14 the opinion that you were drunk?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. And do you have any reason to disagree

17 with her or challenge her opinion?

18 A. No. That is her opinion.

19 Q. When you left Celebration's, you and

20 your husband Tracy got in you four-wheel drive

21 vehicle?

22 A. Yes.

23 Q. And you headed back toward home, is that

24 correct?

25 A. Yes.

 

Page 19

1 Q. And your route took you onto Greenhill

2 Road?

3 A. Yes.

4 Q. Were you retracing the route that you

5 had followed to Brooster's?

6 A. Yes.

7 Q. Greenhill Road was a familiar road to

8 you?

9 A. It's not one I travel a lot.

10 Q. But you're familiar with it?

11 A. Yeah.

12 Q. You had traveled on it before?

13 A. I've traveled on it before, yes.

14 Q. And you were familiar with it prior to

15 October 4th, 1996?

16 A. I've taken that road before, yes.

17 Q. As you were traveling along Greenhill

18 Road, were you paying attention to the roadway or

19 what was up ahead?

20 A. No, I was not.

21 Q. I understand that you had learned that

22 your mother would need angioplasty?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. They were going to insert a catheter

25 into her?

 

Page 20

1 A. They had already inserted the catheter

2 and whatnot and the dye and she was in -- she had

3 some serious medical problems, yes.

4 Q. And she needed a stent?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Had she had angioplasty yet or just

7 the angiogram?

8 A. Just the dye.

9 Q. So just the diagnostic procedure, the

10 angiography had disclosed a blockage and she needed

11 angioplasty and a stent?

12 A. Correct.

13 Q. You were emotional over that, is that

14 correct?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. Does alcohol make you more emotional?

17 A. It can.

18 Q. Were you crying in the car?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. Are you more likely to cry after you

21 have been drinking than without drinking?

22 A. I don't know.

23 Q. I mean, were you crying at home before

24 you left for Brooster's?

25 A. No.

 

Page 21

1 Q. As you and Tracy were driving along

2 Greenhill Road towards the intersection of

3 Greenhill and Highway 58, was Tracy, from what you

4 could observe, paying attention to the roadway?

5 A. Yes.

6 Q. Was he looking forward and observing

7 what was up ahead from what you could tell?

8 A. Most of the time I had my head down.

9 Q. So you were not, most of the time,

10 looking in his direction?

11 A. Correct.

12 Q. So you can't really testify whether or not he

13 was looking forward and paying attention to the

14 roadway up ahead?

15 A. I don't know.

16 Q. Would you agree with me that Greenhill

'17 Road is a broad, generally straight roadway.

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. That from -- are familiar with the

20 intersection of Greenhill and South Main?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. And that' some distance to the east of

23 the intersection of Greenhill and Highway 58,

24 correct?

25 A. Yes.

 

Page 22

1 Q. Would you agree with me that at least

2 from the intersection of South Main and Greenhill

3 Road it's a pretty open, clear view if you're

4 heading east -- or west, rather, toward Highway 58?

5 A. Yeah.

6 Q. The intersection of Highway 58 and

7 Greenhill Road is clearly visible, correct?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. As are the lights controlling that

10 intersection; correct?

11 A. As far as I know, yes.

12 Q. Do you know whether as your vehicle

13 traveled the distance between South Main and

14 Greenhill Road along Greenhill Road toward

15 Highway 58 Tracy, your husband, was paying

16 attention to the road up ahead and was being

17 watchful for the intersection and for the lights

18 at that intersection?

19 A. Can you repeat that? I didn't get all

20 that. I'm sorry.

21 Q. Can you tell us whether or not as your

22 vehicle traveled that distance between South Main

23 and Highway 58 along Greenhill Road, your husband

24 was paying attention to the road up ahead and being

25 watchful for those traffic lights up ahead?

 

Page 23

1 A. Again, I had my head down, I was crying,

2 he was talking to me, so I don't know.

3 Q. You can't tell me where his eyes were as

4 he traveled west there?

5 A. I know he did make eye contact with me.

6 When I would look at him, he would look at me.

7 Other than that, I had my head down. I don't know.

8 Q. So you either had you head down or you

9 were -- on those occasions when you did look in his

10 direction, he was looking at you?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. Was he holding your hand?

13 A. At times.

14 Q. Okay. Did you ever notice the flashing

15 red lights controlling traffic traveling in your

16 direction at the intersection of Greenhill Road and

17 Highway 58 prior to the collision?

18 A. No.

19 Q. Before your vehicle collided with Juli

20 Farrell's vehicle, were you even aware you were in

21 an intersection?

22 A. No.

23 Q. Did you feel your vehicle slow down,

24 sense your husband applying the breaks on your

25 vehicle at any time prior to the very moment of

 

Page 24

1 impact?

2 A. That I don't know.

3 Q. Did you experience your vehicle taking

4 any evasive action to avoid the collision?

5 A. I believe we swerved to the left.

6 Again, I don't know.

7 Q. Was your head down?

8 A. My head was down, I looked up, and it

9 happened so fast that I don't -- I don't know --

10 Q. What caused you to lift your head?

11 A. Tracy made the comment, I believe he

12 said, "Oh, shit." basically. And I looked up and

13 there was a car.

14 Q. That was the first indication from Tracy

15 that you were aware of that he was cognizant, aware

16 of any other vehicle in the area?

17 A. I'm sorry, I don't understand.

18 Q. Well, Tracy's expletive right just

19 seconds before this collision occurred was the

20 first indication that he gave of being aware of

21 another vehicle in the vicinity of the

22 intersection?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. What happened? Tell me what happened.

25 You looked up.

 

Page 25

1 A. I looked up. The next thing I know, I

2 was trying to get out of the car.

3 Q. Do you remember the collision itself?

4 A. No.

5 Q. Do you remember what happened to you in

6 the collision itself?

7 A. No.

8 Q. Did you strike your head on anything?

9 A. I don't know.

10 Q. Were did you vehicle wind up?

11 A. Alongside 58 going south, I believe.

12 Q. It was spun around?

13 A. I'm not even sure. I don't know.

14 Q. Do you remember your vehicle traveling

15 to the rest position?

16 A. No.

17 Q. You don't have any memory basically from

18 the time that you head the metal crunch to the

19 time that your vehicle was finally at rest and you

20 were sitting in it after the vehicle came to rest?

21 A. I don't remember anything, no.

22 Q. What did you do next after you became

23 aware of where you were? What did you do?

24 A. I believe I tried to get out of the car.

25 Q. Did you have difficulty getting out of

 

Page 26

1 the car? did you have difficulty getting out of

2 the car?

3 A. The door opened fine. No, no

4 difficulty.

5 Q. Did you have difficulty just physically

6 getting out of the car?

7 A. Probably.

8 Q. Tell me about that. What do you mean?

9 A. The air bag went off in my face. So I'm

10 sure I was shocked or stunned, whatnot.

11 Q. Okay. Did you have any injuries that

12 affected your ability to get out of the car?

13 A. Not apparent at the time.

14 Q. You were successful in getting yourself

15 out of the car?

16 A. Yes.

17 Q. Did you have any problems standing after

18 you got out of the car?

19 A. I'm sure I was wobbly. Again, I don't

20 know.

21 Q. When you say you are sure you were

22 wobbly, have you heard others describe you ad being

23 wobbly?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Do you recall being wobbly yourself?

 

Page 27

1 A. Well, again, I got hit by an air bag.

2 It fractured my rib, so I'm assuming I got hit

3 pretty hard. And trying to get out after something

4 like that, I'm just assuming that I would be

5 wobbly.

6 Q. Okay. Do you recall yourself having any

7 problems walking?

8 A. As a fact I don't remember, no.

9 Q. Did you have any problems with movement

10 either walking or grasping or any motor skill

11 problems after getting out of the car?

12 A. I don't know.

13 Q. Did you have any problems walking or

14 with motor skills that you attribute to your

15 alcohol consumption?

16 A. I don't know.

17 Q. After you got out of the car, what

18 happened?

19 A. Tracy walked over I believe to my side

20 of the car and someone, a bystander, if you want to

21 call them that, had stopped and came up. And we

22 were walking in the middle of the intersection.

23 And they came up to see how we were and Tracy told

24 them to go check on the people in the other car,

25 and the just tried to get us off to the side of

 

Page 28

1 the street out of traffic. Then I remember sitting

2 down on the median.

3 Q. Do you remember Tracy saying anything to

4 you?

5 A. I remember him speaking.

6 Q. What do you recall him saying?

7 A. I don't know for sure what he was

8 saying. I just remember him talking.

9 Q. You don't remember his words?

10 A. Not exactly.

11 Q. How long did you sit on the median?

12 A. I don't know. Again, the exact time, I

13 don't know. It seemed like hours.

14 Q. Did you go over to the other car?

15 A. I did.

16 Q. Did you observe -- and Tracy did not,

17 did he?

18 A. I don't know.

19 Q. Did you observe the occupants of the

20 other car?

21 A. I didn't get that close.

22 Q. Were they all still in the car when you

23 went over there?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. All right. And were you able to observe

 

Page 29

1 anything about their conditions?

2 A. No. There were people around the car,

3 so I just spoke to them and then I walked back to

4 where I had been sitting.

5 Q. What did you say to those people and

6 what did they say to you?

7 A. I don't know exactly what I said. I'm

8 sure it was to the fact of, "Are they okay?", or,

9 "How many are in there?", or something along that

10 line.

11 Q. Okay. Were you disoriented?

12 A. I don't know. Probably.

13 Q. So then you walked over towards the

14 other car and then you went back -- did you go back

15 and sit down on the median?

16 A. I assume so.

17 Q. Okay. At some point in time an

18 ambulance arrived?

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. And you went to the hospital?

21 A. Yes.

22 Q. Did you ride with your husband?

23 A. Yes.

24 Q. And also Tammy was in the ambulance;

25 correct?

 

Page 30

1 A. I believe so.

2 Q. All right. Did your husband say

3 anything during the ambulance trip about the

4 accident?

5 A. I don't recall.

6 Q. At the hospital, what treatment did you

7 receive?

8 A. They asked if I had any injuries. I

9 didn't have any cuts or anything. They moved my

10 arms and shoulders around a little bit to see if

11 there were any broken bones or whatnot. And

12 basically that's it.

13 Q. Okay. So you were released from the

14 emergency room?

15 A. Yes.

16 Q. Can you tell me as you sit here today

17 one way or other whether or not your husband,

18 Tracy, was under the influence of an alcoholic

19 beverage at the time of this collision?

20 A. I'm sorry? Excuse me?

21 MR. LIABO: Why don't you read back the

22 question, Dwight?

23 (The reporter read the last question.)

24 A. No.

25 Q. You just can't say one way or the other?

 

Page 31

1 A. I can't.

2 Q. You were released from the emergency

3 room on October 4th, 1996; correct?

4 A. I believe at the time we were released

5 it was the following morning.

6 Q. Yeah, probably October 5th by then.

7 Okay. you went home with Tracy, I assume?

8 A. Yeah.

9 Q. And then you were contacted sometime on

10 October 5th by the police?

11 A. Yes.

12 Q. And you were told to come down to the

13 Cedar Falls Police Department?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. And at that time were you told when you

16 went down to the Police Department, were you told

17 that Juli Farrell had died?

18 A. When we got there, yes.

19 Q. And you were asked to give a statement

20 to the police; correct?

21 A. Yes.

22 (Deposition Exhibit 30 marked for

23 identification, as requested.)

24 Q. Mrs. Rokes, the court reporter has

25 marked as Deposition Exhibit Number 30 what I

 

Page 32

1 believe to be a copy of the statement that you gave

2 to the Cedar Falls Police Department. I'm going to

3 ask you to take a look at Exhibit 30 and tell me if

4 it has been properly identified. And then I'd like

5 you to return it to me, because that's the only

6 copy I've got, and Mr. Bevel can share with you his

7 copy of it.

8 A. Yes, that's my statement.

9 Q. In your statement to the police, in the

10 second paragraph you stated that, quote: At

11 Brooster's I had about six beers. I had more to

12 drink than Tracy because he was driving?

13 Do you see that statement?

14 A. Yes.

15 Q. You told me earlier today in your

16 testimony moments ago that you had no idea how much

17 Tracy was drinking. Do you recall that testimony?

18 A. Yes.

19 Q. When you gave this statement to the

20 police, you communicated to them that although you

21 don't know the exact amount, and you did say that

22 in the next sentence, that you don't know the exact

23 amount that Tracy had to drink, you now that --

24 you did know that Tracy had less to drink than you;

25 correct?

 

Page 33

1 A. I assume so.

2 Q. When you made that statement to the

3 police -- and you understand that it's important to

4 tell the truth to the police, don't you,

5 Mrs. Rokes?

6 A. Yes, I don.

7 Q. All right. When you made that statement

8 to the police that you had more to drink that Tracy

9 because he was driving, did you have any factual

10 basis for that statement?

11 A. Factual?

12 Q. Yes.

13 A. Just from what I observed. Factual no.

14 Q. In other words, when you said that you

15 had more to drink than Tracy because he was

16 driving, you really did not have a factual basis

17 for making that statement, did you?

18 A. Correct.

19 Q. As far as you knew in fact, Tracy might

20 have had more to drink than you; correct?

21 A. I do not know how much he had to drink

22 for sure, no.

23 Q. So the answer is yes, as far as you knew

24 as a matter of fact, Tracy might have had more to

25 drink than you?

 

Page 34

 

1 A. Or less than. I don't know the amount

2 he had.

3 Q. Can you answer my question?

4 A. Yes.

5 Q. Thank you. In the fourth paragraph

6 down, the one that begins "Tracy and I left

7 Brooster's," you state in the middle sentence:

8 "Most of the time I had my head down because I was

9 crying, but at times I remember having eye contact

10 with Tracy." Correct?

11 A. Correct?

12 Q. And, of course, we've discussed that in

13 order to be having eye contact with you, Tracy

14 would have had to have been looking away from the

15 roadway; correct?

16 A. Right.

17 Q. You state further that "We were driving

18 and then I heard Tracy say, "Oh, shit," and then we

19 hit the other car. I did not see the other car

20 until Tracy said, "Oh, shit.."

21 Is that an accurate statement?

22 A. Yes.

23 You then state, quote: Tracy told me

24 later that his light was green, end quote.

25 Is that correct? Is that what you said?

 

Page 35

1 A. That's what I said.

2 Q. Okay. When did Tracy tell you that he

3 had a green light?

4 A. I don't know an exact time or if it was

5 after the accident while we were sitting there or

6 if it was later the next day or whatnot. But at

7 some point he made the comment that he thought his

8 light was green.

9 Q. So your testimony is that you can't

10 recall, just so I understand it, you remember Tracy

11 telling you that he had the green light, but you

12 don't remember whether it was at the scene or the

13 next day?

14 A. I don't remember for sure, no.

15 Q. Did he ever tell you that he saw a red

16 light click off or go off?

17 A. Has he ever said that?

18 Q. Right.

19 A. Yes.

20 Q. When was the first time he said that to

21 to you?

22 A. Again, I don't know if we were talking

23 about it that night or if it was the next morning

24 when we were talking about it. But it was sometime

25 I believe before we went down to the police

Page 36

 

1 station.

2 Q. Before you gave this statement to the

3 officers, Tracy had told you that he saw the red

4 light go off?

5 A. I'm not sure. I don't know.

6 Q. All right. Is it possible that he

7 didn't say that to you until after you gave a

8 statement to the police?

9 A. Again, I don't know for sure. I don't

10 know.

11 Q. In fact, is it possible that he didn't

12 make the statement to you until just the last few

13 days?

14 A. No. I've heard the statement before.

15 But, again, as far as during the accident or right

16 after or before the police statement, I don't know.

17 Q. If he made the statement to you that he

18 saw the light -- the red light go off, if he had

19 made that statement to you before you made the

20 statement to the police, obviously you didn't tell

21 the police about that statement, is that correct?

22 A. Again, I don't know if we were talking

23 about it that night or if it was the next morning

24 when we were talking about it. But it was sometime

25 I believe before we went down to the police.

 

Page 36

1 station.

2 Q. Before you gave this statement to the

3 officers, Tracy had told you that he saw a red

4 light go off?

5 A. I'm not sure. I don't know.

6 Q. All right. Is it possible that he

7 didn't say that to you until after you gave a

8 statement to the police?

9 A. Again, I don't know for sure. I don't

10 know.

11 Q. In fact, it is possible that he didn't

12 make that statement to you until just the last few

13 days?

14 A. No. I've heard the statement before

15 But, again, as far as during the accident or right

16 after or before the police statement, I don't know.

17 Q. If he made the statement to you that he

18 saw the light -- the red light go off, if he had

19 made that statement to you before you made the

20 statement to the police, obviously you didn't tell

21 the police about that statement, is that correct?

22 A. I didn't word it that way.

23 Q. Well, nowhere in your statement --

24 A. Right.

25 Q. -- do you tell the officer that your

Page 37

 

1 husband saw the red light turn off/

2 A. Correct.

3 Q. What you tell the officer is that your

4 husband old you the light was green/

5 A. That's what it says.

6 Q. When you made the statement to the

7 officer, did you know what the lighting sequence

8 for the traffic light was at the time of the

9 collision?

10 A. No.

11 Q. So when you gave this statement to the

12 officer on October 5th, 1996, your testimony is you

13 did not know that the traffic light was in the

14 flashing red mode at the time of the collision?

15 A. I did not know, no.

16 Q. Okay. So when you made this statement,

17 it seems plausible to you, possible to you that

18 Tracy had the green light when he went into that

19 intersection?

20 A. Yeah.

21 Q. And is that the impression that you

22 were -- I mean, you were conveying that information

23 to the officer then in turn; correct?

24 A. I did.

25 Q. In other words, you felt it was

 

Page 38

1 plausible that Tracy might have the -- might have

2 had the green light and that's the impression you

3 were going to leave with the officer; correct?

4 A. I made that statement when I gave my

5 statement. So, I mean other than that, I guess I

6 don't understand what you're asking.

7 Q. Well, you testified that you thought it

8 was plausible when you made this statement that

9 Tracy had a green light; correct?

10 A. That I think it was possible he had a

11 green light? Yes.

12 Q. And you know now that that's not true;

13 correct?

14 A. I know now it's not true; right.

15 Q. So that's another statement that you

16 made in that statement that does not have a factual

17 basis; correct?

18 A. Correct. This is my statement of my

19 opinion.

20 Q. Well, but you also knew that law

21 enforcement officials would read this statement and

22 to some extent rely upon it; correct?

23 A. Correct.

24 Q. There had obviously been a very serious

25 collision involving the death of a young woman,

Page 39

 

1 correct?

2 A. Correct.

3 Q. And you knew that your statement would

4 be part of the evidence that the officers would use

5 in sorting out what happened and finding the truth;

6 correct?

7 A. At that point in time I was just giving

8 them a statement as far as what they asked me about

9 what happened that evening. I didn't know the

10 extent of what my statement would be used as at

11 that point in time.

12 Q. You knew the officers would use that

13 statement; correct?

14 A. I'm assuming that's why I had to give a

15 statement, yes.

16 Q. And you knew that they would -- it would

17 be part of the information that they would utilize

18 and consider in sorting out the truth over what

19 happened; correct?

20 A. I really don't know for sure what they

21 do with statements, but I guess that's why I gave

22 one. So, correct.

23 Q. So the answer is "yes"?

24 A. Yes.

25 Q. Are there any other statement that you

 

Page 40

1 made within this statement that do not have a

2 factual basis?

3 A. I guess I don't understand what you're

4 saying when you say factual basis.

5 Q. Anything else in looking at that you

6 would say is inaccurate?

7 A. The only thing I would question is maybe

8 the time I have Tracy coming home. I don't think

9 it was that late.

10 Q. Okay. Everything else looks okay?

11 A. Yeah.

12 MR. LIABO: That's all I have for no.

13 Thank you.

14 DIRECT EXAMINATION

15 BY MR. GALLAGHER:

16 Q. I'm Ed Gallagher, Mrs. Rokes, and I

17 represent the Kleinheksel family.

18 I don't have a lot of questions for

19 you.

20 As I understand it, you told Mr. Liabo

21 that you had two or three beers at the house before

22 you left the house?

23 A. Approximately, yes.

24 Q. And he asked you questions about your

25 statement. You indicated in your statement at the

Page 41

 

1 second paragraph, "At Brooster's I had about six

2 beers." Do you see that?

3 A. Uh-huh.

4 Q. So wouldn't it be appropriate to say

5 that the truth would be that you had eight or nine

6 beers that night, if you count the three that you

7 had at the house, or two or three?

8 A. I believe my statement say, "I had

9 about six beers." As to the exact count, I don't

10 know. But if I had two or three at home and then

11 approximately four or five there, yes, it would be

12 more than five or six.

13 Q. How do you get the number four or five?

14 Because it says six.

15 A. It says about six.

16 Q. So let's just go with the "about." If

17 you had about six beers at Brooster's and two or

18 three at the house, wouldn't it be accurate you

19 would have had eight to nine beers?

20 A. Approximately eight, yes.

21 Q. Well, it would be eight to nine if it

22 was two or three at the house and six at

23 Brooster's, isn't that accurate?

24 A. That would be accurate.

25 Q. And if you would have had eight or nine

 

Page 42

1 beers, are you telling or are you going to tell a

2 jury in this case that you weren't drunk?

3 A. I was never tested, so I don't know

4 legally.

5 Q. You were feeling the effects of the

6 alcohol, weren't you?

7 A. Yes.

8 Q. Have you ever been in an accident with

9 your husband before?

10 A. No.

11 Q. That night did you ever walk over to the

12 other car and see the three girls that were in the

13 other car?

14 A. I did walk over there.

15 Q. Were you able to see what was happening

16 or the people in the car?

17 A. I can't remember. I could see people in

18 the car. Specifically what I saw, I didn't see a

19 lot. Again, there were people around the car. And

20 I asked them if they were okay.

21 Q. You asked the people around the car if

22 they were okay?

23 A. There was someone standing there by the

24 car, yes.

25 Q. Now you did ride in the ambulance with

Page 43

 

1 my client, Tammy Kleinheksel, did you not? I think

2 your husband testified to that.

3 A. I believe that was her, yes.

4 Q. The testimony has been by your husband

5 and other people that she was unconscious at that

6 time, or if she was saying anything, it wasn't

7 making sense. Do you agree with that?

8 A. Yes.

9 Q. Was she thrashing at all with her legs

10 or arms?

11 A. No.

12 Q. Have you talked to Tammy Kleinheksel or

13 seen her since this all happened?

14 A. I've not talked to her. I did see her

15 at the criminal case.

16 Q. Okay. As I understand it, at no time

17 did you see a light ahead before the impact?

18 A. No.

19 Q. Right after the accident your husband

20 did say, "It's our fault," did he not?

21 A. I don't know for sure.

22 Q. Well, he has testified, "My wife said,

23 "whose fault was it?" And I said, "I think it's

24 our fault."

25 MR. BEVEL: What page are you referring

 

Page 44

 

1 to?

2 MR. GALLAGHER: On pare 887.

3 Q. Do you recall him saying that?

4 A. He could have.

5 Q. Okay. And you agree with that if it

6 was, in fact, a flashing red light, do you not, as

7 far as fault?

8 MR. BEVEL: Objection. It calls for a

9 legal opinion.

10 You can answer.

11 A. If ours was flashing red, yes.

12 MR. GALLAGHER: I think that's all I

13 have. Thank you.

14 MR. LIABO: Anybody else?

15 MR. HELLMAN: No.

16 MR. BEVEL: Is that it?

17 MR. LIABO: That's it.

updated 12/15/16