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Pittsburgh Criminal Lawyer > > Homicide > ‘Worst driver’ pleads guilty to homicide, drunk driving charges

‘Worst driver’ pleads guilty to homicide, drunk driving charges

It is a dubious honor to be named the worst driver in your county, but one Chester County man has received that distinction. Official reports show that the man, who is accused of causing a fatal motorcycle accident in 2013, has been arrested eight times on drunk driving charges since 1981. At least half of those arrests have involved blood alcohol content levels at least three times the legal limit. Now, the man has pleaded guilty to homicide by vehicle while driving under the influence, in addition to driving without a license. He could spend up to 17 years in prison for the violation. The mandatory minimum sentence for this crime in Pennsylvania is three to six years. The defendant was first arrested for DUI in 1981, with a slew of additional arrests occurring through 2009. Each consecutive conviction yielded harsher consequences, including time in custody. Various tools were used in attempts to prevent the man from facing more DUI charges. Those included electronic monitoring devices, jail time and even community service. Attorneys may be able to secure such alternate punishment for those who have been convicted of even multiple DUI offenses. The man’s license was suspended after every incident. Authorities report that the man struck a 24-year-old motorcycle rider in 2013 when the defendant drove into oncoming traffic. His blood alcohol content at that time was 0.283 percent, which is more than triple the legal limit. The driver explained during a 2010 proceeding that he was seeking sobriety, though he admitted that the disease of alcoholism could possibly kill him. The parents of the victim have been vocal about their support for stricter legislation for multiple-offense DUI drivers. Proposed legislation would increase penalties for those who have three previous DUIs and cause a fatal crash while drunk. Each fatality in such a crash would lead to a seven-year prison term. Experts say that mandatory minimum laws do little except keep DUI drivers off the roads for a period of time; they are not effective deterrents for crime. Source:  The Philadelphia Inquirer, “West Chester man, called county’s worst drunk driver, pleads guilty” 14 April 2014

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