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Man to face trial for manslaughter in deaths of men working in Paso Robles water pipeline

A Sacramento man accused of involuntary manslaughter in the deaths of two men while working on the Nacimiento pipeline in 2008 will face trial.

Henry Duggins, 52, is accused of two counts of involuntary manslaughter and two counts of violating occupational safety causing death in the fatalities of Jacob Gaines, 24, of Bakersfield and Manuel Villagomez, 38, of Elk Grove.

Duggins appeared before Judge Michael Duffy for a preliminary hearing this week. He's accused of causing a rupture after an excavator hit an eight inch water line.

The incident occurred at the intersection of South River and Niblick roads in Paso Robles where the men were working on Oct. 2, 2008.

The men drowned after water surged into a dark and dank section of pipeline, 30 inches in diameter, after an excavator hit a water line. State investigators say Duggins ignored verbal warnings that a water line was in the same area where crews were digging a trench.

Duffy found that sufficient evidence existed for the case to move to trial – the standard to determine whether to move forward with proceedings after a preliminary hearing, which lasted six days, concluding Thursday.

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