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California woman killed: Driving under the influence to blame?

A tragic accident has claimed the life of a 19-year-old California woman. The woman was a passenger in a vehicle that flipped after the driver apparently lost control. Three other passengers were taken to the hospital with what were listed as non-life threatening injuries. The driver, a 20-year-old woman, was arrested on suspicion of driving under the influence.

The driver also suffered injuries, but they appeared non-life threatening as well. A news report noted that evidence at the crash scene led authorities to suspect the woman was drinking, but no further details were provided. There was no mention of field sobriety testing, Breathalyzer results or a blood draw arranged in connection with the crash.

Multiple families have been affected by this accident. Obviously the family of the deceased is dealing with a tremendous loss. However, the young driver and her family are fighting a battle of their own. With an investigation pending and police asking for any eyewitness statements, this young woman's fate may soon lie in the hands of the criminal court system. She is entitled to the same fairness as all other citizens in this situation, and that includes the presumption of innocence unless and until prosecutors are able to prove otherwise in court.

Any California resident facing charges for driving under the influence may find it beneficial to gain an understanding of the applicable laws and procedure applicable to their situation. All parties have certain basic legal rights that must be observed. Even if the evidence seems overwhelming, there may be options such as a plea agreement as a means of limiting the consequences a guilty verdict might bring. Having a thorough knowledge of the laws could help determine the best way to proceed with any defense for charges faced.

Source: nbclosangeles.com, "Passenger Killed in Suspected DUI Crash in Pomona," Olsen Ebright, April 7, 2013

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