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Driver accused of DUI also faces vehicular homicide charge

Most people in Vancouver associate drunk driving with minor traffic violations, such as weaving, failing to signal a turn or missing a stop sign. The worst outcome is being pulled over by a police officer and possible suspension of a driver's license. The reality of drunk driving unfortunately can be far more consequential, as a woman recently arrested in Clark County has learned.

According to witnesses, a man was attempting to walk across Northeast 28th Street by dodging between moving cars. One of the cars struck the man, and knocked him to the pavement. Vancouver police filed an affidavit of probable cause that alleged that they found a car nearby with front end damage and a broken windshield.

The female driver was detained by police and questioned about the incident. She allegedly said that she did not see the victim in time to stop. She also said that she had consumed a lemon drop cocktail about 1-1/2 hours before the accident. The woman agreed to take a field sobriety test that, according to police, returned a reading showing a blood alcohol content of 0.142% less than 30 minutes after the accident. The maximum limit in Washington is 0.08%.

The victim was taken to a nearby hospital, where he died from his injuries. When police learned that the victim died, they added a charge of vehicular homicide to the DUI charge. In addition, when the driver's record was check, police learned that she had a previous DUI arrest within the last 10 years and that she was driving without a valid license.

News reports of the accident indicate that the defendant has retained the services of a local attorney. Having counsel in such cases is always wise. A knowledgeable lawyer can evaluate the evidence, suggest potential defense strategies and, when appropriate, assist in negotiating a plea agreement.

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