Articles Tagged with los angeles DUI murder

Drivers convicted of a DUI in Los Angeles face a variety of penalties, including fines, loss of license and time in jail. A judge may show some leniency but usually reserves the right to reinstate punishments (including jail time) if the person violates the terms of parole.Carol-Ferdigan-dui

This summer, Carol Ferdigan pled guilty to charges of vehicular homicide in the horrific deaths of her husband and her son-in-law. The judge released her pending sentence this fall, but she had to promise to refrain from drinking alcohol and to wear a transdermal alcohol sensing device. In early October, that device showed that Ferdigan had been drinking and that her blood alcohol content tipped 0.16% BAC, twice the legal limit, per California Vehicle Code section 23152(b).

That violation sent Ferdigan back to King County Jail to await sentencing on October 23rd.

The deaths occurred in May 2014, when Ferdigan had been enjoying a meal with several family members in her home in Sammamish, Washington. Ferdigan left the table to move her Jeep, but she apparently had consumed so much alcohol that she mistook the accelerator for the brake. She pressed the gas repeatedly, plowing through her home, smashing the table where her family sat and continuing into Lake Sammamish. The crash killed her husband and her son-in-law and badly injured her daughter.

Ferdigan wasn’t hurt; neither was her young grandson, who had been sitting on her lap while she went on her deadly drive.

Ferdigan’s blood alcohol content measured 0.16%, and she allegedly was also driving under the influence of Ambien.
The 69-year-old grandmother ended up taking a guilty plea on charges of reckless endangerment-DUI, with a recommendation

that the court sentence her to six years in prison instead of the 10-13 years she might otherwise have faced.
The justice system isn’t taking any chances with Ferdigan this time; the court denied her bail request. This incident could also influence the judge, who may—but does not have to—follow the sentencing recommendations in her plea deal.

Respond strategically to your arrest and charges by calling a former Senior Deputy D.A. and highly successful Los Angeles DUI defense attorney with the Kraut Criminal & DUI Lawyers today for a complimentary consultation.

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We recently reported on a horrifying Los Angeles DUI story: 21-year-old Olivia Carolee Culbreathlos-angeles-DUI-murder allegedly caused a three car accident in Diamond Bar, which killed six people.

California Highway Patrol authorities say Culbreath had been driving in excess of 100 miles per hour, when she crashed her 2013 Camaro on the 60 Freeway while driving the wrong way. It turns out that Culbreath has a checkered driving history. In April 2010, a San Bernardino juvenile court convicted her of DUI in a previous incident. Before she got her license reinstated in December 2011, officers hit her with two other traffic violations. The California Department of Motor Vehicles says the DMV had lifted Culbreath’s license restrictions just a week before the awful, fatal wreck.

Four people in the Ford Explorer she hit — Gregorio Megia Martinez (47), Laticia Ibarra (42), Ester Delgado, and Jessica Jasmine Megia (20) — died. Joel Cortez (57), the driver of the third car involved in the wreck, escaped with just minor injuries. His daughter, Emma Cortez, later told reporters: “he remembers seeing part of an engine that hit him, pushed him against the wall, completely crushing both sides of the car … in shock, the first thing he does is look around. There’s a freeway, two cars completely destroyed. And there are bodies on the floor without heads … this is something you’d see out of a movie.”

In California, certain DUI cases that lead to death can be prosecuted as “Watson Murders.” This charge is the equivalent of second degree murder. If convicted, you face a severe sentence – up to life behind bars. The prosecution must hit a high bar to achieve a conviction.

It’s rare for prosecutors to charge someone with a Watson Murder. The majority of these cases involve people who have been convicted of DUI previously. After you are convicted of a DUI, you must sign a statement — known as a Watson Advisement — in which you acknowledge that you understand that driving DUI can cause people to die.

Prosecutors must also prove that you had “implied malice.” This basically means that you knew the harms of DUI driving, yet you decided to drive DUI anyway; and then you killed someone while behind the wheel.

Whether you face an egregious charge, like Los Angeles DUI manslaughter or murder; or you face a more minor (but still anxiety producing) charge, like misdemeanor DUI, the team here at the Kraut Criminal & DUI Lawyers can provide thorough, sensitive assistance.
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