A 53-year-old Port St. Lucie man has been placed under arrest in connection with the death of a stranded motorist who was standing outside of his car on the 900 block of Southeast Port St. Lucie Boulevard last weekend. A witness identified the suspect as the driver of a vehicle that sat at a green light for about 15 seconds before speeding off well above the speed limit to pass vehicles ahead of him. The suspect is alleged to have hit both the disabled vehicle with its emergency lights flashing and the victim.
The suspect admitted to investigating police officers that he had consumed four to five beers and four to five shots of tequila before the crash. Officers related that the man had a strong odor of an alcoholic beverage coming from him. He was also said to have had watery and bloodshot eyes and slurred speech.
Measurements taken by investigators at the scene showed that the decedent’s first impact with the pavement was 48 feet from the disabled vehicle while his body was found 90 feet from it. The suspect’s vehicle was determined to have traveled over a football field in length after the impact while the victim’s vehicle traveled 124 feet. Police did not release the results of blood alcohol content testing on the suspect, but it was reported that he was over the legal limit.
In Florida, the charge of DUI manslaughter involves the death of a person by another person who was driving under the influence. The crime is a felony with a mandatory minimum penalty of four years in prison. The maximum punishment is 15 years in prison and a lifetime driver’s license revocation.
Jeffrey H. Garland has been board certified as a criminal trial lawyer, and he’s been serving DUI clients in St. Lucie County and the Treasure Coast for over 30 years. You must remember that there are defenses to drunk driving cases, and the State of Florida must overcome the burden of proof of beyond a reasonable doubt in any criminal case. If you or somebody close to you has been charged with DUI anywhere in Port St. Lucie County or anywhere else along Florida’s Treasure Coast, invoke and protect your rights immediately. Contact Port St. Lucie DUI attorney Jeffrey H. Garland right away at (772) 242-6380 for a free consultation and case evaluation.