Drinking and driving can lead to dangerous and deadly consequences for those who cross paths with the intoxicated driver. In San Diego in October of 2016, a deadly accident occurred because of a man decided to get behind the wheel while under the influence. A number of people were gathered at Chicano Park for an event "celebrating the La Raza Run, a motorcycle festival that had live music, food, art exhibits and a tribute to fallen riders." The park is located under and around a freeway overpass. The freeway is the start of the Coronado Bay Bridge, which stretches across the bay from mainland San Diego to Coronado Island.
At around 3:30 in the afternoon a driver, later identified as Richard Anthony Sepolio was driving on the bridge when he "hit a guardrail, rolled and landed on a crowd of people at Chicano Park." Four people died in the collision and at least nine were injured. Sepolio was not killed in the crash, but he was critically injured. San Diego's NBC 7 reported that the 24-year old driver was "hospitalized and arrested on suspicion of DUI." In addition, "[h]e has been charged with vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, DUI causing injury or death and other charges related to significant injury of others."
Unfortunately, people are injured and killed in accidents with drunk drivers every day. In fact, according to a statistic reported by the Mothers Against Drunk Driving (MADD), a person is injured in a drunk driving crash every two minutes. Across the United States, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) reported that there were 10,265 alcohol-impaired driving fatalities in 2015.
The penalties for driving under the influence vary from state to state. WalletHub recently conducted a study that compared the DUI laws of the different states. In determining which state had the strictest laws it looked at 15 key metrics and assigned each metric a point value. These metrics included things such as the minimum jail time that the state requires, the minimum fine, and when a DUI is considered a felony. WalletHub then added up the points and ranked the states based on how strict or lenient its laws are. The state with the most points had the strictest DUI laws and the state with the least had the most lenient laws.
The study found that Arizona has the nation's toughest DUI laws. Georgia is second, followed by Alaska, Oklahoma, Nebraska, Kansas, Connecticut, and Utah. West Virginia and Texas round out the top ten. North and South Dakota, along with Washington, D.C. have the most lenient laws in the country. In fact, South Dakota does not even mandate jail time or license suspension as a penalty for getting a DUI.
If you are facing charges for driving under the influence in Georgia, you want a competent and knowledgeable Forsyth County DUI Lawyer on your side. Contact the Law Office of Richard Lawson today at (404) 816-4440, or click here to fill out the online form.