The penalty for DUI causing injury in California can depend on whether the charge is a felony or a misdemeanor. If it is simply a misdemeanor, the penalties include 5 days to 1 year in county jail, a fine of up to $2000, 1 to 3 years license suspension, between 3 and 30 months in DUI school, 3-5 years probation and you must pay restitution to your victims for their injuries. The penalties for felony DUI causing injury increase significantly. One of those penalties includes felony offender status, time in state prison, loss of driver’s license for 5 years, and 18 to 30 months in DUI school, plus additional penalties. ABC 7 Chicago reports on an investigation that led to a CHP officer being declared responsible for an accident, not the intoxicated driver.
Last summer, when Stacey Horne was arrested, things did not look bright for the young woman. She had just been an accident with a Clovis police car and a pedestrian had suffered major injuries with her BAC tested at .10%. She was charged with felony DUI.
Then the CHP report came back with a surprising twist. The final report placed the blame not on Horne, but on the Clovis police officer. Horne was nearly through the intersection of Minnewawa and San Jose when Officer Nicholas Campbell hit her. Campbell told investigators that he was trying to catch a DUI suspect, so he was going between 40 to 50 miles per hour. The airbag control module, however, revealed that the officer was going about 76 or 77 m.p.h. and was not running his lights or his sirens. According to CHP investigators, had Campbell been traveling at the speed he said he’d been traveling, he would have missed Horne entirely.
Horne’s DUI was downgraded to a misdemeanor.