Actress who plays Judge “Maximum Moxley” arrested for DUI

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Soap opera star Jensen Buchanan, who plays Judge Moxley, i.e., “Maximum Moxley on The Young and the Restless, was arrested for DUI after driving into oncoming traffic and causing a collision with major injuries to another person.

She is certainly hoping that she does not face a judge with a similar nickname.

From Entertainment Tonight:

Soap opera star Jensen Buchanan was arrested for driving under the influence after causing a car crash in Buellton, California, on Wednesday morning, according to the California Highway Patrol.

According to the collision report, the 53-year-old actress, best known for her roles in One Life to Live and Another World, also caused major injuries to another driver in the wrong-way crash.

“The immediate cause is under investigation — our understanding is she allowed [her] vehicle to cross the double yellow lines,” John Ortega, public information officer for the Buellton office of the CHP told ET. “There were two parties involved — a driver in each vehicle.”

According to the police report obtained by ET, at approximately 6:19 a.m., Buchanan’s vehicle, a black Mercedes S550, drifted across the solid double yellow lines of the road as she was driving eastbound on State Route 154. The documents claim that she drove directly into the path of a driver of a white Ford C-Max, causing a head-on traffic collision.

Police say Buchanan and the other driver, Bradley Asolas, a 56-year-old man from Camarillo, California, were transported to the Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. Buchanan was treated for minor injuries and arrested for DUI. Asolas was treated for major injuries.

“It is confirmed Jensen Buchanan as the driver of a black Mercedes,” Ortega also told ET. “Jensen Buchanan was arrested for DUI — she had minor injuries and went to Santa Barbara Cottage Hospital. As far as law enforcement is aware, she is still there. The other party had major injuries and was also taken to Cottage Hospital — there is no update on his condition.”

The Santa Barbara Sheriff’s Department confirmed to ET that Buchanan was booked charges of driving under the influence of alcohol/drugs with injury or death and driving under the influence of .08 alcohol causing bodily injury, She is being held on $100,000 bail.

Man interviewed on TV confesses to fatal DUI crash: “I drove because he was drunker”

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From the NY Daily News:

A Los Angeles man confessed to a fatal drunk driving wreck as TV cameras rolled, telling the unsuspecting reporter he didn’t want to drive, but was forced to because his drinking buddy was more intoxicated.

“We were drinking. Record it,” the suspect, identified only as Jose, said as hewalked up to a FOX 11 news crew at the scene of the crash Monday.

“He was drunker!” Jose blurted out.

The accident early Monday killed Jose’s cousin Juan, who was riding in the passenger seat, officials said. Jose fled from the scene before he realized Juan was dead, and returned while the local news team was setting up their cameras.

Jose told the reporter that after a night on the town, Juan started to drive the pair home but stopped in the “middle of the freeway” and demanded Jose take the wheel.

“He was drunk already, and I told him I couldn’t drive, so he made me drive,” Jose told the reporter as cameras rolled. “And he made me drive, and I told him I couldn’t drive.”

Jose said after he started driving, he lost control of the car and slammed into a light pole. He left to go get help, he said, and found first-responders and the news team on the scene when he returned.

As he confessed the saga to the reporter, Jose — unaware the crash killed his cousin — asked how Juan was doing.

Police delivered the heartbreaking news, then gave Jose a field sobriety test and arrested him.

Click her to see the full story and video:  http://www.nydailynews.com/news/national/watch-man-confesses-fatal-dui-wreck-tv-interview-article-1.2541065

Tip of the hat to Springfield attorney Theodore Harvatin for posting this on social media, where I first saw this.

 

“I do not deserve to be breathing the same air as all of you,” says fatal DUI crash defendant at sentencing

From the Chicago Tribune, story by Steve Schmadeke:

The mother of a promising University of Chicago Law School student sobbed Thursday as she talked in a Cook County courtroom about how a crash caused by a man driving the wrong way on Lake Shore Drive while drunk had forever changed two families’ lives.

Judith Wasil’s son, Michael, 24, suffered traumatic brain injuries, while his friend Laura Anne LaPlante, 26, also a U. of C. law student, was killed. Both were three weeks from graduation from the prestigious school.

“Certain truths that I had always taken to be self-evident were instantly shattered,” said Wasil, whose son did not attend the hearing at the Leighton Criminal Court Building. “We were no longer a normal, happy family. My son was lying in a hospital bed hooked up to machines and fighting for his life. My family had suffered one of the worst tragedies a family can experience.”

The defendant, Erik Johnson, sat with slumped shoulders looking shellshocked as Wasil spoke. He briefly appeared to lose his composure and fight back tears as Assistant State’s Attorney Geraldine D’Souza read a statement from LaPlante’s parents wishing Johnson’s family well…

Johnson pleaded guilty to two counts of aggravated DUI and was sentenced to eight years in prison as part of a deal worked out with the approval of both victims’ families. He must serve a minimum of nearly six years in prison.Johnson, at the time of the crash a recent Loyola University graduate who had been out drinking with co-workers, had a blood-alcohol level of 0.195 percent, about 2 1/2 times the legal limit.

His SUV, being driven south in the northbound lanes on a twisting curve of Lake Shore Drive near Navy Pier, smashed into a taxi carrying LaPlante and Wasil shortly before 2 a.m. in early May 2014. The impact knocked both into the taxi’s windshield. The driver, the only one wearing a seat belt, suffered a broken elbow.

Calling it “a heart-wrenching tragedy of the worst kind,” Wasil’s mother said the massive injuries at first left her son unable to swallow, eat, drink, walk, talk, read or write. He has recovered physically except for a pronounced limp, she told Judge William Lacy, but his brain injury “continues to be problematic” and is “essentially a life sentence.”

Wasil has difficulty even forming sentences, according to an attorney for the family…

Moments before the judge handed down the sentence, Johnson, now 25, apologized for his actions.

“I do not deserve to be breathing the same air as all of you,” Johnson told the courtroom. “I wish this senseless act had killed me alone because of my own mistake.

“I was brought up in a moral and ethical household where we were taught to respect life and a person’s free will,” he said. “No one in my family ever committed a crime, no one in my family ever hurt anyone. But in one night I lost complete control over everything I’ve ever been taught and everything I’ve ever believed myself.

“I have single-handedly taken away the life of a young woman already great but destined for greater things,” Johnson said. “I am devastated to think of what I have taken from you.”

Johnson, who vowed to work to prevent drunken driving after his release from prison, kept his eyes downcast as a deputy sheriff led him from the courtroom.

Read the full story here:  http://www.chicagotribune.com/news/local/breaking/ct-lake-shore-drive-crash-law-students-met-20160204-story.html

87 year old crashes through driving facility at end of road test

From driver crashes into license facility (story by Michelle Groenke):

An 87-year-old man who was taking his driving exam in order to renew his license crashed his vehicle Wednesday into a wall at the front of the Secretary of State’s driver’s license facility in Deerfield.

No one was injured, Deerfield police said.

“It happened around lunch time,” according to Secretary of State spokesman Dave Druker. “There is some damage to the building, but they’ll have it repaired immediately.”

Druker said it appears the man, who was in the car with an examiner, stepped on the accelerator instead of the brake, striking a post and several signs. It appears the examiner helped steer the vehicle away from the building, according to Druker.

Cops: Two Impaired Drivers Collide, cause death of pedestrian

From the Chicago Sun-Times:

wo people are facing DUI charges after a traffic crash left a pedestrian dead Friday night in southwest suburban Joliet.

About 8:30 p.m., a Mazda sedan was pulling out from a parking lot at the southeast corner of Hickory Street and Western Avenue in Joliet when it struck a westbound Hyundai on Western, Joliet police Deputy Chief Edgar Gregory said.

The impact sent the vehicles to the northwest corner of the intersection, where 56-year-old Mark A. Cipolla was standing, according to Gregory and the Will County sheriff’s office.

Cipolla, of the 300 block of North Ottawa Street in Joliet, was pinned under the Hyundai, police said. Emergency crews extricated him and took him to Provena Saint Joseph Medical Center in Joliet, where he was pronounced dead at 9:19 p.m., authorities said.

Both drivers, 21-year-old Jefferson Davis and 18-year-old Oscar A. Garduno Lopez, were arrested for DUI, authorities said.

Davis, of the 1300 block of Emington Lane in Minooka, was allegedly driving under the influence of alcohol and Garduno, of the 0 – 100 block of North Hunter Avenue in Joliet, was driving under the influence of cannabis, Gregory said. Court information was not immediately available.

Report says St. Louis Cardinal’s Oscar Tavares had 0.287 BAC at time of fatal crash

From the Chicago Tribune:

St. Louis Cardinals outfielder Oscar Taveras apparently was driving drunk when he died along with his girlfriend in a fatal crash in the Dominican Republic last month.

A toxicology report indicated that Taveras’ blood-alcohol content was .287, more than five times the legal limit of .05 in the country, during the Oct. 26 accident on a highway in Puerto Plata, said Tessie Sanchez, a spokeswoman for the Dominican Republic Attorney General’s office, in an interview with the Associated Press.

Taveras’ girlfriend, 18-year-old Edilia Arvelo, was with him at the time of the crash.

The 22-year-old Taveras was considered one of the top prospects in baseball this past season. He made his major league debut with the Cardinals and batted .239 with three home runs and 22 RBIs in 80 games.

Two weeks before the accident, Taveras hit a home run that tied Game 3 of the National League Championship Series against the San Francisco Giants.

Former NBA star Mookie Blaylock sentenced to 15 years for vehicular manslaughter

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From the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:

By Steve Visser

The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

On Monday, former NBA All-Star Daron “Mookie” Blaylock was sent to prison for killing a woman in a crash on Tara Boulevard…

The 47-year-old former Atlanta Hawk, was sentenced to 15 years but with only three to actually serve in prison for vehicular homicide and other charges in the death of Monica Murphy — a mother of five — in a head-on collision in Clayton County on May 31, 2013.

The fall from NBA standout to prison was one of basketball honors and DUI convictions. Blaylock starred in the NBA All-Star game 20 years ago, had his Oklahoma Sooners jersey retired in honor 2001 and retired a feted player — twice on the NBA’s All-Defense Team — despite a bumpy ending with the Golden State Warriors in 2002.

The negotiated plea came on the day jury selection was to start for his trial, his attorney Amanda Palmer told the Atlanta Journal-Constitutution.

The plea was for seven years in prison and eight on probation but allows for prison sentence to be suspended after three years as long as he completes requirements including: 1,500 hours of community service, treatment for alcoholism, including twice weekly Alcoholic Anonymous meetings, and doesn’t drive for the entire 15 years, Palmer said.

“He has admitted he has a problem with alcohol and he is getting treatment for that,” she said.

The toxicology screens showed no alcohol in Blaylock’s system at the time of the crash, Palmer said. The reckless driving, vehicular homicide charges arose because doctors had told him not to drive because he was prone to seizures attributed to alcoholism, she said. He had been arrested for DUI a month before the crash and he had “several past DUI convictions,” Palmer said.

Blaylock was seriously injured in the wreck and temporarily on life support, but he was released from the hospital days later. After the accident, his lawyers blamed the collision on a blackout caused by a medical condition.. A family member told police Blaylock was under treatment for seizures.

Blaylock has been in treatment at Potter’s House in Jefferson, a long-term residential program for treatment of addiction run by Atlanta Mission. He apologized to Frank Murphy, the husband of the 40-year-old victim, in court before being taken into custody.

“He said something to the effect that the accident had changed him, and I think he was referring to his drinking,” Palmer said. “Mr. Murphy spoke and said he understood it was a negotiated sentence….I can’t say he went so far to let say he was OK with it but I guess he let the court know he didn’t oppose it.”