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Driver pleads not guilty in David Talsma's death | News

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Driver pleads not guilty in David Talsma's death

HUDSONVILLE, Mich. (WZZM) - An Indiana driver charged in the death of 13-year-old David Talsma entered a not guilty plea on Wednesday. It was Travis Fox's first court appearance at the Hudsonville courthouse since being charged in the deadly distracted driving crash on I-196 over the summer. 

The judge set Fox's bond at $1,000, but he's only required to pay ten percent of that.

It was a $100 payment standing between Travis Fox and his Indiana home. Outside the courtroom, Fox had no comment as he posted bail. 

Moments earlier, the judge read the charge against Fox: moving violation causing death.  When the judge asked how Fox would plea, he replied, "not guilty."

His charge stems from an incident back in August on I-196 near Hudsonville. Invesigators say Fox admitted he was eating a sandwich and checking GPS when he didn't realize traffic had stopped for construction. He then smashed into the back of a mini-van with 13-year-old David Talsma in the back seat. David died.

Last month, WZZM 13 spoke to David's father, Jason, just after Fox was charged with a misdemeanor. The misdemeanor means a maximum one year in jail.

"You could drive a car and kill somebody and not face a felony charge, I was really surprised by that," Jason Talsma told WZZM 13 in September. "It minimizes my son’s life, in my estimation."

Back in court, Fox's attorney says Fox has cooperated with police from the beginning.

"He's taking this quite seriously," Fox's attorney told the judge.

"As he should," the judge replied.

Fox told the judge he's had no trouble with the law before this.  The judge asked about other pending charges against him, whether he was on probation or parole, and if he had a prior criminal record as an adult or juvenile. Fox answered, "No, your Honor," to all of the questions.

After a request by Fox's attorney, the judge agreed to lift travel restrictions and allow Fox to return to his home in Crown Point, Indiana, as long as he meets all his court obligations. 

Fox could face up to one year in jail if convicted or a two thousand dollar fine. His next court date has not been scheduled yet.