The judge who denied Amy Senser's request to stay out of prison during her appeal must explain that decision, the Minnesota Court of Appeals ordered this week, sending the issue back to Hennepin County District Court for a rehearing.
The order, filed Tuesday, says District Judge Daniel Mabley "summarily" denied a motion by Senser's attorney that she remain free while she appeals her conviction of two counts of criminal vehicular homicide. Senser has been incarcerated since July 9, when she was sentenced to 41 months in prison for the hit-and-run death of Anousone Phanthavong in 2011.
"Although the burden is on appellant to establish that she is entitled to relief, [the law] requires that the court state its reasoning," Appellate Judge John Rodenberg wrote.
Attorney Eric Nelson has been fighting for Senser's release, arguing that the mother of two and wife of ex-Vikings star Joe Senser is not a flight risk and unlikely to commit a crime or intimidate witnesses. Hennepin County prosecutors opposed the motion. The hearing has not yet been scheduled, Nelson said. Senser will be present. Senser, convicted in May of two counts of felony criminal vehicular homicide, maintained she didn't know she hit anyone.