Driving Under the Influence of drugs or alcohol (DUI) is a serious criminal offense that carries life-altering consequences. Moreover, when a person is involved in an automobile accident and charged with DUI the penalties escalate. An even more egregious offense is when a person is involved in an auto accident, charged with DUI, and children were in the car.
Kelsey Winistorfer, a 30-year-old St. Johns County teacher was arrested the other day and charged with driving under the influence and child neglect when she crashed her Toyota Highlander into a ditch at around 10 a.m. Kelsey was on medical leave from her teaching job. Police cited her slurred speech and swaying while standing as probable cause to make the DUI arrest. Kelsey allegedly submitted to PAS testing, was booked and taken to jail.
Amazingly, when one thinks of a drunk driving accident involving children, it is of an innocent family that is struck by a drunk driver. Literally, nothing could be further from the truth. A recent study showed that the majority of children that are killed by drunk drivers are in the same vehicle as the drunk driver, not the vehicle driven by the innocent victim. “They (the study) found that 2,344 children younger than 15 years old died in 2,075 car crashes involving drunk drivers between 2001 and 2010.” For more information, please visit: http://www.reuters.com/article/us-child-death-drinking-driving-idUSKBN0DL0O320140505
The penalties for DUI Child Neglect are severe. For DUI with children under 18 in the vehicle, existing DUI penalties for a first offense are increased by fines of up to $2,000 and 9 months in jail. For multiple offenses, the penalties are increased by up to $4,000 and a year in jail.