As anyone who has been convicted of drunk driving in Maryland knows, the penalties for such an offense can be severe. But there's a marked difference between the charges that come after a traffic stop versus a serious crash caused by driving under the influence. Whereas the former might earn you a simple charge of driving while impaired, an accident that injures or kills someone might put you behind bars for several years. And that punishment doesn't include the impact a crash could have on another person's life.
A Maryland man is facing the consequences of a drunk-driving crash that killed a young woman last month. The Garrett County Sheriff's Office says the man will now face three counts of homicide by motor vehicle in connection with the early-morning accident on George Washington Highway. He had already been charged with two counts of DUI, driving while impaired, negligent driving and failure to drive right of center.
The 21-year-old woman who died in the crash was a front-seat passenger in the defendant's SUV. The two were headed down the highway shortly after midnight when he suddenly lost control of the vehicle. He collided with an embankment on the side of the highway and the woman was ejected from the SUV. She later died at a hospital. The driver was arrested on the DUI-related charges, but the homicide counts are a relatively new addition.
Needless to say, a conviction on these extra counts would add significant prison time to the man's sentence. He may need to reconsider his legal counsel to ensure he's represented by someone with experience in the defense of both drunk driving and violent crimes.
Source: Cumberland Times-News, "Oakland man charged with homicide by motor vehicle," Jan. 21, 2013
- Our firm handles drunk-driving cases, violent crimes and a wide range of other criminal defense matters. To learn more about our practice, please visit our Maryland motor vehicle offenses page.