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Highland Haven city secretary arrested for intoxicated manslaughter

Jeffery Dean Lederer

The Texas Department of Public Safety has charged Highland Haven City Secretary Jeffery Dean Lederer with intoxicated manslaughter after he was involved in an Oct. 1 collision near Evant that killed a 62-year-old San Antonio woman. Photo courtesy of the Lampasas County Sheriff’s Office

Texas Department of Public Safety troopers charged the Highland Haven city secretary with felony intoxicated manslaughter after he was involved in an Oct. 1 collision in Lampasas County that killed a San Antonio woman.

Troopers arrested Jefferey Dean Lederer, 48, after he “showed signs of intoxication” during the collision investigation, according to a DPS report.

Lederer is on unpaid leave of absence, said Highland Haven Mayor Olan Kelley. 

“He’s requested that,” Kelley said. “We don’t have any other information to discuss. I understand he was involved in an accident. That’s all I know.”

According to the DPS report, troopers responded to a major collision at 10:22 p.m. Friday, Oct. 1, on U.S. 281 about 8 miles south of Evant.

The report stated that Lederer was traveling north on the highway in a 2020 Ford Edge when the Edge crossed the double-yellow line into the path of an oncoming 2016 Dodge Ram.

The passenger in the truck, identified as 62-year-old Carol Ann Neatherlin, died at the scene. Emergency crews transported the 71-year-old driver of the Dodge Ram, who was unidentified, to Rollins Brook Hospital in Lampasas with non-life-threatening injuries, according to the report.

Troopers booked Lederer into the Lampasas County Jail, where he has since bonded out.

Lederer took the oath of office and has served as the Highland Lakes city secretary since July 26. The city has only two paid staff members: the city secretary and an administrative assistant.

As for whether Lederer will remain the city secretary, Kelley indicated the city’s Board of Aldermen are examining all options, including termination and resignation.

“It’s a personnel matter,” he said. “That’s all under consideration. That’s all I can say.”

The crash investigation is still active and open, according to the DPS.

jfierro@thepicayune.com

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