A man was arrested in Napa County and accused of causing a fatal single-car crash due to drunk driving. California police arrived at the scene of the 5:50 a.m. wreck to discover that a passenger was dead. They then arrested the driver on a felony drunk driving charge.
How the accident happened
Authorities reported that a man was driving a sport utility vehicle east along Highway 128 on a Sunday and failed to make a turn properly. The SUV then went down an embankment before flipping multiple times. The passenger was killed in the crash.
Police said they suspected that the 54-year-old driver was driving while impaired by alcohol. The driver was detained and booked in jail, with his bail set at $100,000. Authorities continue to investigate the crash.
The accused man may choose to proceed to trial to fight the drunk driving charge. At trial, the prosecution must prove the charge beyond a reasonable doubt — a high standard that is difficult to meet — before a conviction can occur. This standard exists to protect innocent people from being convicted of crimes they did not commit.
An alternative option is to seek a plea agreement with California prosecutors. A negotiated plea deal may result in a lighter charge and/or a more lenient sentence than what may be imposed after a guilty verdict at trial. A criminal defense attorney can help the man consider both options and will push for the best outcome for the client given the surrounding circumstances.