DUI Appeal Goes Forward

The judicial system is set up so that a person accused and convicted of any crime may appeal that conviction. This extends even to DUI convictions. New evidence can come forward that allows for the court system to allow the appeal.

A former Central High School boys basketball coach who was serving a 12-year sentence for a DUI- related crash that killed a 7-year-old boy could get a new trial.

Early last month, the 5th District Court of Appeals in Fresno allowed Loren LeBeau’s defense attorney to file a motion to set aside LeBeau’s plea. LeBeau had entered a no-contest plea to charges of gross vehicular manslaughter, hit-and-run causing death and injuries, and drunken driving.

In the accident leading to the charges, 7-year-old Donovan Maldonado was with his family crossing the street in a crosswalk when he was struck by LeBeau. The boy was subsequently drug under LeBeau’s car for 800 feet. The boy’s father, Jesse Maldonado, also suffered serious injuries.

The Court of Appeals ruled that Judge Gregory Fain incorrectly denied LeBeau’s request for a continuance during his 2013 hearing. The continuance request was made after the defense discovered new evidence, but was prevented from submitting that evidence because they failed to submit a request two days in advance.

The new evidence that had been discovered was related to an accident reconstruction video. The video was made after a civil suit was brought against the city and LeBeau by the Maldonado family. In the civil suit, the Maldonado family was awarded money by the city, citing that the intersection crosswalk was badly configured. The city settled with the Maldonado family for an amount of $1.15 million dollars. This may indicate that LeBeau’s fault, if any, is lessened in the accident.

LeBeau’s attorney, Roger Nutall, plans to file the motion, which is due within 60 days of the court’s decision.

If you have been charged with DUI, it is important that you have representation at your hearing. Our attorneys are all experienced in DUI defense. Contact us today.

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