While California takes a strong stance on any DUI charge, there are certain circumstances where a DUI may have more serious penalties than others. The first of these circumstances, of course, is if there is an accident that involves injuries. If those injuries are serious, the driver could find themselves facing felony charges. Another circumstance is if there is a minor under the age of 14 in the vehicle. Even if the driver is just pulled over before an accident can happen, they can still face charges of child neglect, or the DUI charge can become enhanced to having a minor in the car. If there is an accident, the driver could even face charges of felony child neglect or abuse. The driver would face these charges on top of whatever DUI charges they are facing.
The Sacramento Bee reports that a 10-year-old boy was killed, and the driver suspected of DUI broke his spine in an accident in Sutter County.
The two-car collision occurred at about 6:30 p.m. on Sunday evening on Highway 20.
According to the CHP, a Ford Fusion was traveling east on the highway when the driver lost control of the vehicle, sending it plowing into a concrete wall on the westbound side of the highway near South Tarke Road.
A Toyota Tacoma was in the westbound lanes and attempted to brake but was unable to avoid colliding with the Ford. There was extensive damage to both vehicles as a result of the collision.
A 10-year-old boy in the Ford was the victim of fatal injuries and was pronounced dead at the scene. 29-year-old Tony Kesterson, who was driving the Ford, received compound fractures to his spine.
Kesterson was arrested on suspicion of DUI and booked into the Sutter County Jail. He is also facing charges of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated. The driver of the Toyota was not injured and was not arrested on any charges.
The collision is still being investigated.