While most people arrested and charged with driving while under the influence of beer, wine or hard liquor do little more than catch the eye of an observant police officer while operating their vehicle in a possible suspicious manner, other individuals charged with driving while intoxicated occasionally cause an accident. Of those drivers that do hit another vehicle while impaired by alcohol or prescription medication (drug DUI), some regrettably kill one or more people in the process.
As DWI defense attorneys here in New Jersey, we understand how a motorist can be accused of DWI following a routine traffic stop. Those that are convicted can expect relatively stiff fines and other penalties. But as bad as a DWI conviction can be, combining it with a fatal traffic collision is something nobody wants to experience.
Not long ago, a motorist from Lambertville admitted to driving while intoxicated when he caused a traffic accident that killed his passenger and injured two other people. As a result of a plea agreement, 25-year-old Jorge Orellana, a resident of Hunterdon County, NJ, was due to be sentenced to five years in jail in relation to the traffic crash that caused the death of 19-year-old Alonso Bautista in October 2010. Based on court records, Orellana will have to serve at least 85 percent of his sentence before he can even be eligible for parole.
As part of the court proceedings, Orellana reportedly pled guilty on two counts of vehicular assault that caused critical injury to two of his other passengers at the time of the collision. He was reportedly to be sentenced to four years in jail for each of the two assault charges. Those two sentences were expected to run concurrently with the vehicular homicide sentence. Orellana was also expected to lose his driver’s license as well.
According to news articles, the deadly accident that resulted in the recent conviction happened in Trenton, NJ, last fall. The defendant had testified that he drank six beers that evening before getting into his vehicle and heading southbound on Rte 29. Not long after, around 1:30am, Orellana reportedly lost control of the near Sullivan Way. Prior to the trail, he had been held on $1 million bail.
As an illegal immigrant from Ecuador, Orellana will face deportation once he has served out his time and is released from prison.