In California, if you are charged with a DUI while a minor is in the car, you could face the possibility of two charges. One is a DUI sentence enhancement known as “DUI with a minor.” For this enhancement to apply to a specific DUI, the minor in the vehicle must be under 14 years of age. The second charge a person may face in this specific instance is child endangerment. Depending upon the circumstances of the case, either charge may be applied. The DUI with a minor sentence enhancement adds jail time to a DUI conviction, but it also must be reported to Child Protective Services (CPS), who may further investigate.
The East Bay Times reports on a man facing murder and child abuse charges in a fatal accident.
31-year-old Tyler Underwood was arrested Friday night by the California Highway Patrol and is facing a total of nine charges. Five of these charges are felonies.
The charges stem from an October 9th accident on Interstate 680 in Fremont that led to the death of 32-year-old Darren Walker. Walker’s body was not discovered until the next day.
At the time of the accident, Underwood was racing a BMW against another vehicle being driven by friends. Inside the BMW were Underwood’s four-year-old daughter and an unidentified female passenger, along with Walker. The BMW veered off-road and crashed into an embankment.
Initially, a passenger in the second vehicle claimed to have been driving the BMW. He was arrested for DUI. However, evidence began to point towards Underwood having actually been the driver. When police were on the scene of the accident, no one in either vehicle mentioned that Walker had been in the car.
Underwood is facing charges of murder, gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, child abuse, two counts of DUI causing injury, driving on a suspended license with a previous DUI, and driving a car without an ignition interlock device.
Shortly after the accident, Underwood was shown to have a BAC of .16%. Underwood is also facing sentence enhancements of reckless driving, having a blood-alcohol concentration of .15 or more, and having a person under the age of 14 in the car.