Choosing the person to be your designated driver is important, after all, you are putting your life in their hands in the event you need them to drive you home. Unfortunately, one woman was assigned the role of being a designated driver but wound up killing a motorcyclist in an accident that occurred in Louisville, KY. That driver has been identified as 27-year-old Jane Watts and she is now facing some serious charges that could put her away for years [Source: WDRB].
It was early in the morning on June 30thwhen Watts was driving near Second Street and Broadway with a passenger when she crossed into the path of a motorcyclist. Micah Milburn, 27, was on that bike at the time and died as a result of the impact, despite the fact that he was wearing a helmet. When police arrived at the accident scene, they said they smelled alcohol on Watts’ breath and she admitted she had been drinking earlier in the evening. Watts also told officers that she was the designated driver.
Police then had Watts submit to a field sobriety test and she agreed to give a blood sample. The results revealed that her blood alcohol level was .19, although the legal limit is .08. Clearly, Watts may not have been the right choice in terms of choosing a good designated driver. Watts was then arrested and taken into police custody. She was arraigned on July 2ndand charged with murder, DUI, and wanton endangerment. The wanton endangerment charge was filed because Watts had someone in the vehicle with her at the time of the drunk driving accident. Watts was also looking at a $100,000 bond but District Court Judge Amber Wolf decided to cut it in half $50,000.
During the hearing, she said, “I do believe that as this is not even alleged to be an intentional act that she doesn’t really present as much of a danger as we would normally consider on a murder charge so a $50,000 bond I think is going to be an appropriate bond to HIP if posted.” Watts is expected to be back in court in August and if she posts bond, “she will be released on home incarceration” and won’t be allowed to drive or drink.
How to choose the right designated driver?
If you are going to assign someone with the role of being a designated driver, be sure they are prepared to take on the responsibility before relying on them for their help.
If you plan on going out with friends, family, or co-workers and know you want to have a few drinks, while there is nothing wrong with that, it can be a problem if you are planning on driving yourself home. The reason we assign someone with the role of being a designated driver is to avoid these types of situations. But, should your designated driver be someone who has had a drink themselves or someone who has consumed no alcohol at all? While that question is debatable, you have to be cognizant of the fact that any amount of alcohol has the ability to impair a person and affect their ability to drive.
So, rather be safe than sorry, you may want to choose someone who will stay true to their word and not have a drink or make alternate plans on how to get home.
In the event you have found yourself involved in a DUI accident, the next step you want to take is to contact a Louisville, KY drunk driving accident attorney. Depending on the circumstances surrounding the accident, you could be charged with DUI, vehicular manslaughter, or worse, murder. And because drunk drivers are frowned upon so heavily, you will find that it is harder to fight these charges or even get them reduced.
So, if you want someone who is going to be on your side and backing you up, contact USAttorneys.com and let us connect you with a qualified DUI accident lawyer in Louisville, KY who is prepared to represent you.