A Louisiana man who was arrested on July 3 has had charges against him upgraded, according to local sources. Police in Baton Rouge arrested the man for suspected drunk driving after he crashed into a bench. The charges have been upgraded to include vehicular homicide now that the victim who had been sitting on the bench at the time has died.
Police say the accident happened around 2:15 p.m. when the driver, a 39-year-old man, lost control of his vehicle and crashed into a bench at a bus stop on the side of the road. The report goes on to say the man fled the scene in his vehicle. The occupant of the bench, who has not been publicly identified, suffered injuries, including two broken legs, head injuries and a broken knee cap. He was taken to a local hospital, where he was later pronounced dead.
Police found the man attempting to enter an apartment believed to be his. They say he showed signs of intoxication, but did not elaborate on the details. Officers say he allegedly admitted to drinking before getting behind the wheel, and that his blood alcohol percentage was measured at .188, well above the .08 legal limit in Louisiana. However, no mention was made of how or when his blood was tested.
Drunk driving cases, especially those involving fatalities, can carry heavy criminal penalties here in Louisiana. However, a variety of factors can influence a blood alcohol test that could lead to a false reading. Depending on the amount of time it took officers to conduct a blood test, his readings could have shifted considerably from when the accident took place. His attorney will take all of this into consideration when he or she begins to build a case in his defense.