On October 31, 2013, Cody Money, a 20 year old, was allegedly behind the wheel of a pickup when he drifted off the road, hitting and killing Justin Relethford, Justin, a 16 year old, had been walking his girlfriend home on the shoulder of State Route 410 near Warner Avenue in Enumclaw when he was struck by Cody’s pickup. Cody volunteered to give a blood sample after the accident. Recently, however, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Missouri v. McNeely that all blood draws require a search warrant.
Prosecutors had hoped to charge Cody with vehicular homicide, but without a search warrant, the blood evidence against Cody was not admissible in a trial. Thus, a vehicular homicide charge was not attainable. Instead of facing vehicular homicide, Cody was charged with reckless driving, reckless endangerment, and driving under the influence. Under Cody’s plea agreement, he faced a maximum of 364 days behind bars for each crime. However, the King County Prosecutor’s office was recommending a year in jail and six months of treatment programs.
On Friday, January 3, 2014, Justin’s family fumed that the court robbed them of justice. Cody received a much lighter sentence than what was coming to him with a vehicular homicide conviction. Justin’s family was disappointed by what they felt was a less than sufficient sentence for Cody’s actions on October 31, 2013.
Lest it be said, these types of cases seem to be routinely occurring in Washington State; the public’s outcry is causing a major crackdown on alcohol and/or drug fueled accidents. Now more than ever, hiring a Seattle DUI attorney can help – at a minimum – reduce DUI related penalties, and can help direct people on how to best deal with their DUI related charge. So it should go without saying that someone cited for DUI should hire a qualified Seattle DUI attorney as soon as possible. Driving Under the Influence charges can cause havoc on a person’s personal and professional life. Anyone charged with DUI in Washington State should immediately seek the assistance of a seasoned Seattle DUI lawyer.