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DUI manslaughter charges filed after Miami car crash

A man in Miami has been arrested following a car accident that killed another man. According to authorities, this man was driving in Miami around 7:40 p.m. when he hit a pedestrian near the intersection of Northwest 20th Street and Northwest Seventh Avenue. Following the collision with the pedestrian, the man went on to hit a concrete poll near a bus stop.

When police arrived on the accident scene they administered a field sobriety test. According to police, the man failed that test before he was arrested. The pedestrian was taken via ambulance to a local hospital but died as a result of his injuries. Following the pedestrian's death, the man was charged with DUI manslaughter.

While people may think that all drunk driving charges are the same, that is not true. There are different levels of seriousness depending on the specific charges and the facts in each case. All DUI charges are serious, but when someone else is hurt or killed as a result of a drunk driver and the driver is charged with intoxicated manslaughter the penalties increase significantly.

In this case, the man could be sentenced to up to five years in prison, subject to drivers' license revocation for up to five years and heavy fines. A conviction on felony drunk driving charges could also lead to a damaged reputation and problems finding a job.

However, a person can only be convicted of a DUI and sentenced to these penalties if the police can show that a person was actually driving under the influence of alcohol. Evidence of a person's blood alcohol content level can be challenged in court, as well as the results of a field sobriety test. If police fail to administer any test measuring a person's BAC level correctly, charges may be dropped.

Source: CBS Miami, "Driver Strikes, Kills Pedestrian; Charged With DUI Manslaughter," Sept. 13, 2013

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