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DUI fatal suspect freed on bond to pursue cancer treatment

The need for advocacy in a criminal case is not restricted to just defending against the charge at trial. Anyone standing accused of a crime must have their day in court, but there can be matters that arise before any trial takes place. At any given moment, there could be a need to make an appeal to the court and an experienced attorney can help ensure that a defendant's rights are protected and upheld.

This may well have been what was in play recently in the case of a Navy petty officer. The 29-year-old sailor is facing a charge of second offense driving under the influence. He's also accused of involuntary manslaughter in the May 4 death of a Virginia Beach pedestrian. 

Police arrested the defendant on the night of the fatal collision. They say his blood alcohol level as tested by a breath test was three times the legal 0.08 percent limit allowed.

He was initially being held without bond, but at a hearing on May 9, the judge allowed him to be released after posting a $25,000 surety bond. The reason: so that the defendant could get treatments he needs to fight cancer and to recover from a double-lung transplant.

Under the terms of the bond the defendant is under orders to remain at a Navy facility in North Carolina while he gets treatment at Duke University. He can only leave the base for care and to meet with his attorney. He cannot drive himself anywhere, drink or use illicit drugs. He is said to be wearing a monitoring device to make sure he doesn't drink.

Those may seem like tough restrictions, but he is free while he gets the care he needs. The man's next appearance in court is slated for June 12.

Source: The Virginian-Pilot, "Driver accused of DUI in fatal Beach crash gets bond," Margaret Matray, May 10, 2014

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