Fort Lauderdale, FL – On June 13th, a 22-year-old woman was driving her mother's Porsche with a blood alcohol level that was over twice the legal limit, when she fatally struck two men who were sitting down talking in a parking lot.
At a hearing in July, a Broward judge set the young woman's bond for $450,000 after the prosecutor informed the judge that she had told a co-worker that she planned to flee to Europe to escape prosecution.
The 22-year-old woman works for a South Florida dental equipment repair company and happens to hold dual U.S. and British citizenship. Assistant State Attorney Eric Linder considers her a flight risk since she reapplied for a passport with the British Consulate after the crash, and because she told a co-worker that she planned to flee to Ireland.
The defendant's attorney denied that his client was planning to flee the country, stating that she and her family were intending to travel abroad on vacation, noting that his client didn't realize that she was required to stay in the United States while her case was pending. Her attorney told the judge that they are dealing with people who have never been in the system before, and that they don't understand that because they're under investigation, they can't go on vacation.
According to toxicology reports, the 22-year-old driver had a blood alcohol concentration (BAC) of 0.17% at the time of the crash on June 13. Her blood was drawn at the scene.
The defendant surrendered at the Broward County Main jail at 7:00 a.m. on a Wednesday and was charged with two counts of DUI manslaughter, and two counts of unlawful blood alcohol level manslaughter, among other
DUI-related offenses. That afternoon Broward County Judge John "Jay" Hurly ordered that the defendant be held on $450,000 bond. She briefly cried as she listened to her conditions of release which included house arrest if she gets out of jail.
Judge Hurly said that a credible tipster had told a Miami-Dade investigator that the defendant had reported to work after the fatal crash and that she was overheard saying that she was planning on going to Ireland to escape prosecution in the case.
According to Fort Lauderdale police, the defendant was driving her mother's 2012 Porsche Panamera along West Broward Boulevard and Southwest Fifth Avenue when she barreled through bushes and struck and killed two men in their thirties. The crash occurred at about 2:15 a.m. when she was driving west on Broward Boulevard and tried to make a southbound turn onto Southwest Fifth Avenue. She wound up plowing through a hedge and hitting two men who were sitting and chatting in a parking lot.
The defendant was accompanied by two passengers, but no one inside the Porsche was hurt. One of the men died at the scene, while the other was dragged by the Porsche; he died later that day at Broward General Medical Center.
Our hearts and thoughts go out to the victims and their families in this great tragedy.