A pedestrian accident turned fatal over the weekend, and now the driver of the vehicle has been arrested for driving under the influence (DUI). While there are many components to the incident, one of them is the professional repercussions that the driver is likely to face as a result of the crash. As a city employee and driving a city truck at the time of the crash, the driver is very likely to lose his position.
Man Arrested for DUI After Fatal Pedestrian Accident
Last Saturday evening in Kent, Washington, a 73-year-old man was hit as he was crossing the road by a Kent city employee in a municipal truck. The driver left the scene, but a witness followed him and got the driver to stop a few blocks away from the crash.
Officers and witnesses tried to revive the pedestrian but were unsuccessful.
The driver of the city truck admitted that he had been drinking but denied hitting the pedestrian. When he was given a breath test, his blood alcohol content (BAC) was found to be well over the legal limit. He was arrested on suspicion of DUI, leaving the scene of a crash, and vehicular homicide, though prosecutors have yet to decide what the charges will be.
Job Loss: An Often-Overlooked Aspect of DUI Charges
According to the initial reports, the driver was a part-time and temporary employee on the Kent Parks Department's maintenance crew. He was on the job for less than four months.
Employment policies at the city of Kent, like elsewhere, prohibit workers from using alcohol while on the clock or working on behalf of the city. Violations are fire-able offenses.
Despite the fact that the driver has not been convicted, and that no charges had even been filed, yet, Kent Mayor Dana Ralph commented on the crash: “Having violated the city's substance abuse policies, the employee will not be returning to work at the City, no matter the outcome of the criminal case.”
The comment is striking in how preemptive it is – yes, the driver's breath test apparently came in over the legal limit, but portable breathalyzers are so prone to failure or miscalibration that they are rarely used as admissible evidence in court. However, presumptive statements by employers like these about the guilt of a DUI suspect are very normal after drunk driving arrests. Companies want to insulate themselves against any taint of being associated with a DUI suspect, whatsoever, and will often fire someone on the merest allegation of wrongdoing to cover their own reputation.
Steve Karimi Defends Against DUI Charges in Seattle
Being accused of DUI in Seattle is a serious ordeal. There are fines, jail time, and a lengthy license suspension on the table if you get convicted. However, there are also employment repercussions that can happen immediately – sometimes as soon as your boss learns of your arrest. When the evidence against you is flimsy and charges are unlikely to follow, a DUI defense lawyer like Steve Karimi can fight to make sure your job is secure, as well. Contact him online or call his Seattle law office at (206) 621-8777.