Earl L. Jiang, Attorney at Law
Call Me Today 866-263-7866
When you are facing serious legal issues,I provide representation to help protect your future.

DUI charge: Murder conviction after fatal pedestrian accident

A 76-year-old woman was killed in a California pedestrian accident in July 2013. Reportedly, the elderly woman was standing on the side of the road with her 13-year-old grandson -- the boy was blind and holding onto his grandmother's arm. A vehicle operated by a 46-year-old driver struck the two pedestrians. The child suffered non-life threatening injuries, but his grandmother did not survive her injuries. The driver subsequently faced murder accusations along with a DUI charge.

It was reported that the driver was operating the vehicle without a valid driver's license and had a blood alcohol percentage of .31 more than two hours after the crash. This is significantly higher than the legal limit of .08 in California. The woman was convicted after trial in the Orange County Superior Court.

Reportedly, the driver was convicted in 1995 of DUI in Nevada. She subsequently applied for a driver's license in California. At that time, she was formally notified that if she caused a DUI-related fatal accident, a murder charge could be filed against her. This notification is known as a Watson advisement, and it is the basis on which she faced a murder accusation in the recent criminal trial.

Sentencing is scheduled for November, and she faces a state prison term of as much as 18 years to life. Even if a California DUI charge resulting from a fatal accident is elevated to a murder accusation, the defendant has options to consider at every stage of the proceedings. As this case move toward sentencing, defense counsel will focus on offering mitigating circumstances to the court in an effort to persuade the judge presiding over the proceedings to impose a sentence substantially less than the maximum.

Source: sanclementetimes.com, "Woman Convicted of Murder in 2013 San Clemente Hit and Run", Eric Heinz, Oct. 1, 2015

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information