Jacob Kilburg’s life ended 10 days before his 17th birthday.
“A week before he got killed, we were out on the river waterskiing, enjoying the weather,” Wayne Kilburg, the Clinton teen’s grandfather, testified Monday in Clinton County District Court.
The 63-year-old Clinton resident placed a hand on his chest and choked up as he told the court that the river outing last June was the final time he saw his grandson.
Jacob “Jake” Kilburg died early June 14, 2009, after flipping a friend’s car near the Clinton Municipal Airport in the eastbound lanes of U.S. 30. The teen’s blood alcohol content was tested at .102 percent after the crash. The legal limit in Iowa is .08 percent.
A jury trial began Monday for two Clinton residents accused in Jacob Kilburg’s death for supplying alcohol to a group of minors the 16-year-old was partying among the evening of June 13, 2009, and the early morning hours of the following day.
Jeffery M. Rowson, 22, and Lindsey R. Brown, 23, each face a Class D felony charge of providing alcohol to a minor resulting in a death. The charge carries a maximum of five years in prison upon conviction.
Neither David Zimmerman nor William Vilmont, respective counsel for Rowson and Brown, denied Monday that their clients had knowingly supplied alcohol to minors. But both argued that Jacob Kilburg’s crash was not caused by alcohol, as Clinton County Attorney Mike Wolf asserts.
The attorneys in the case presented their opening statements shortly after 2:30 p.m. after jury selection ran through early Monday afternoon.
Zimmerman and Vilmont pointed out that Jacob Kilburg was texting friends just before his early-morning crash, and highlighted the fact that the teen was not an experienced driver who did not have his license.
Camanche police Officer David James, the first to arrive at the rollover, testified Monday that he did not smell an odor of alcohol or see signs of alcohol consumption at the scene of Jacob Kilburg’s crash.
Wayne Kilburg added Monday during his testimony that, after a past court hearing on the case, he and Jacob Kilburg’s father, Jeff Kilburg, received an apology from Brown. He said she told them she had reluctantly purchased alcohol for the group of minors, which included Jacob Kilburg.
Family members of the teen and of the two defendants sat in the courtroom gallery Monday. The trial is scheduled to wrap up today, with both Rowson and Brown expected to take the witness stand.