The Sun-Sentinel reported on May 26 that a 29-year-old Coral Springs woman was charged with driving under the influence (DUI) manslaughter nearly two months after a crash in Tamarac. According to the Sun-Sentinel, the alleged offender drover through a red light and collided with a Toyota Scion XB, critically injuring its 73-year-old driver.
The Sun-Sentinel reported that the Tamarac man who was driving the Toyota died from blunt force injuries a week after the crash. A third car—a Ford Fiesta—was also struck by the Toyota, and the alleged offender’s Cadillac also allegedly drove onto the property of a 7-Eleven gas station, damaging landscaping and knocking down a palm tree, according to the Sun-Sentinel.
The alleged offender told investigators she drank “less than one glass of champagne” before driving. The Broward state attorney’s office told the Sun-Sentinel that the alleged offender had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.20 about an hour after the crash and a BAC of 0.11 when tested seven hours after the crash.
Assistant State Attorney Ross Weiner said during a court appearance that since the alleged offender has a prior DUI conviction, she could be held without bond until a pretrial detention hearing to be held within five days. An assistant public defender Reidy said the alleged offender has lived in Florida all of her life and is the mother of three children.
DUI Defense Lawyer in Broward County
DUI offenses are incredibly common in Florida, but alleged crimes that involve damage to the property of other parties or injuries to other people result in criminal charges that are much more serious. A DUI manslaughter arrest is essentially a person being accused of both drunk driving and vehicular homicide.
In most cases, DUI manslaughter is a second-degree felony punishable by up to 15 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000. If an alleged offender knew, or should have known, that the crash occurred, and failed to give information and render aid as required by Florida Statute § 316.062, DUI manslaughter becomes a first-degree felony punishable by up to 30 years in prison and/or a fine of up to $10,000.
It is important to note that any DUI manslaughter conviction will result in a minimum of four years in prison. While the possible penalties for a DUI manslaughter offense are certainly more serious than traditional drunk driving arrests, many of the same defenses could end up being applicable and possibly result in criminal charges being reduced or dismissed.
A prosecutor needs to prove an alleged offender’s guilt beyond a reasonable doubt, but people may be able to have key evidence suppressed if authorities committed any one of a number of common errors in the administration of field sobriety tests or breath, blood, or urine tests. Furthermore, a prosecutor has to prove that the alleged offender’s alleged actions caused a victim’s death.
Broward County criminal defense attorney Evan A. Hoffman represents clients all over South Florida who have been arrested for drunk driving. He can help you achieve the most favorable possible outcome to your case if you have been charged with DUI manslaughter, including possibly getting the criminal charges minimized or eliminated entirely.