New Year's Eve turned to tragedy along the Kilpatrick Turnpike in Canadian County after a deadly DUI accident.
Oklahoma Highway Patrol troopers say Craig Maker, 30, of Edmond, was under the influence when he went speeding down the Kilpatrick Turnpike at 11:00 p.m. on New Year's Eve. A trooper reportedly witnessed Maker's Toyota Corolla traveling at 116 mile per hour, and the trooper made a U-turn in order to pull over and stop the vehicle. However, before the trooper could catch up to Maker's vehicle, the suspect crashed into the rear of an SUV. The impact ejected the driver of the SUV, a 37-year-old mother, and a passenger, an 18-year-old foreign exchange student visiting her former host family. The driver was killed, and the student sustained critical injuries.
Also injured in the crash were two children who were passengers in the SUV, the driver's 9-year-old and 4-year-old daughters. The younger girl was treated and released, but the 9-year-old remains hospitalized.
Maker, the suspected impaired driver, was treated for a leg injury and released into custody, jailed on complaints of second-degree murder, driving under the influence causing great bodily injury and speeding.
At the time of the crash, the suspect had at least four prior DUI arrests:
- June 5, 2010 - Arrested for DUI in Oklahoma County; convicted in August 2011
- July 1, 2010 - Arrested for DUI in Oklahoma County (municipal arrest); convicted in August 2011
- October 20, 2010 - Arrested for DUI in Logan County; convicted in June 2011
- September 19, 2015 - Arrested for felony DUI in Oklahoma County; convicted in May 2016 and given a 10-year deferred sentence
Under the conditions of his probation, Maker should have had ignition interlock installed on any vehicle he drove. Reports indicate Maker was driving a borrowed vehicle at the time of the crash.
In most cases, a first offense of DUI is prosecuted as a misdemeanor and subsequent DUI arrests are felonies. If an impaired driver causes a fatal accident during the commission of his or her first DUI (misdemeanor), the crime is first degree manslaughter, punishable by a minimum of four years in prison.
If a person cause a fatal DUI accident in the commission of a second or subsequent DUI (felony), the crime is second degree murder, punishable by 10 years to life in prison.
Image credit: www.newyorkduilawyer.net
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