In California, successive DUI convictions within a period of ten years come with escalating consequences. The fees rise, the jail time becomes longer, the license suspension lasts longer. There are other consequences such as the mandatory installation of an ignition interlock device. A person may have to attend up to 36 months of DUI school. Another possibility of escalating penalties with previous DUI convictions is the possibility of facing a murder charge in the event that a person is in a DUI accident that kills someone. This charge is sometimes known as Watson murder and is a 2nd-degree murder charge.
The San Gabriel Valley Tribune reports on a man sentenced to 13 years for a fatal crash on Christmas Day in 2017.
35-year-old Adam Alexander Chacon was sentenced on January 3rd to a prison sentence of 13 years for a DUI fueled Christmas morning crash. On December 12, 2018, Chacon pleaded no contest to charges of manslaughter and DUI. The charges came as the result of a plea agreement between the defense and the Los Angeles County District Attorney’s Office.
Because he had a previous DUI conviction, Chacon was originally charged with murder in the death of his passenger, Justin Hansen, who was just 25-years-old at the time of the crash.
The charges stemmed from a tragic accident that took place on Christmas Day in 2017. Chacon, who was intoxicated at the time, slammed into a tree while Hansen was a passenger in the car. Hansen died from his injuries.
Had Chacon been tried and convicted on the murder charge, it would have carried a sentence of 25 years-to-life.