A man who has been charged with DUI manslaughter expressed disbelief that he had just killed someone. The police report on the accident quotes the suspect as saying “How could they [sic] have died? The crash wasn’t that bad.” But, according to police, it was, and the man now faces DUI manslaughter charges.
The defendant was driving a Honda when it collided with a 1992 Buick being driven by the son of a Palm Beach County deputy sheriff’s son. The driver of the Buick was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the Honda allegedly walked away from the scene of the accident and tried to hide in a nearby garage. Deputies at the scene meanwhile found a cup that they allege smelled of rum.
The driver was found when the owner of the garage was alerted by barks from his dogs. He found the driver “crouched down” in the garage. The driver ran from the garage and was finally found by deputies as he was hiding under a car at another home. When deputies found him, the suspect asked how the other driver was doing. Deputies said that he was dead, causing the suspect to begin crying. Officers reported the suspect’s statements in their report and also alleged that he smelled of alcohol and had red, bloodshot eyes. He has been charged with DUI manslaughter, leaving the scene of an accident, and driving without a valid license.
Under Florida law, the combination of intoxication and serious bodily injury or death significantly increases the severity of penalties that can be imposed in the event of a conviction. For this reason, anyone facing similar charges may wish to consult an experienced criminal defense attorney for an evaluation of the facts of the case, and the law, as well as an estimate of the likelihood of obtaining a favorable plea agreement or outright acquittal.
Source: Orlando Sun-Sentinel, “Man accused of DUI manslaughter in crash that killed son of sheriff’s deputy,” Yaremi Farinas, Aug. 22, 2017