In California, if a DUI accident causes the death of another person, there are three possible charges a person may face: vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, and DUI murder. DUI murder, also known as “Watson” murder, is a second-degree murder charge. Prosecutors typically charge Watson murder only when the suspect has previous DUI charges and they have proof that the suspect was drunk. There are always exceptions, and in particularly egregious DUI cases, a prosecutor may charge murder without these conditions being met.
ABC-30 reports on a man facing DUI murder charges after refusing to take a breathalyzer following an accident that killed an 8-year-old boy.
On Friday, Karmjit Singh faced a judge for this first arraignment, which he requested be postponed. Singh told the judge that he wanted the time to hire a private attorney to represent him in the charges he is facing.
Singh is facing murder charges related to a high-speed wreck that happened on February 23rd when he ran a stop sign going nearly 100 m.p.h. and slammed into the vehicle of 29-year-old Megan Martzen and 33-year-old Scott Martzen. Also, in the car was their 8-year-old son. The young boy was revived by paramedics and rushed to the hospital, where he succumbed to his injuries.
Singh allegedly told police that he was unable to provide a breath sample to determine his blood-alcohol level. Police were able to obtain a blood draw and are awaiting the results of that test.
Charges of murder and driving on a suspended license have already been filed by prosecutors. Singh was on probation at the time of the accident for a 2016 DUI conviction.
He is being held on $1.5 bail and has an immigration detainer.