June 30, 2011
On Tuesday a jury acquitted a 26-year-old Norfolk, Virginia, man who’d been accused of causing the 2009 drunk-driving crash that killed two people and caused serious brain injury to another.
The driver, who is an enlisted Navy sailor, stood trial for a week, and jurors took two days to reach a verdict—finding the man not guilty on two counts of aggravated involuntary manslaughter and a single count of maiming. A 22-year-old nurse and a 25-year-old Navy sailor both died in the crash, while a third passenger sustained permanent brain injury. A fourth passenger escaped with minor injuries.
The crash occurred on July 25, 2009, when the man’s BMW crashed into a tree off Granby Street and caught fire. He had been giving four strangers a ride home from Red Dog Saloon in Ghent. The man testified in court that, while driving, he’d been hit sharply in the jaw by an object or a person in the backseat and passed out. He testified that he didn’t remember the crash.
Though the driver’s blood alcohol content had been above the legal limit, a defense attorney argued that there was “reasonable doubt about what happened it that car.”
Do you think justice was served in this case?