Two Kansas motorists were charged with driving while under the influence of alcohol on Aug. 17 after being involved in motor vehicle accidents with Wichita Police Department patrol cars. The first crash took place during the early morning hours on West Kellogg Drive. The second occurred in the late evening on North Hydraulic Street.
A 58-year-old man was charged with what records reveal was allegedly his third DUI after his pickup truck struck a WPD vehicle while traveling eastbound on the westbound lanes of West Kellogg Avenue near Maize Road at approximately 2:15 a.m. Reports indicate that the officer involved managed to avoid a head-on collision but suffered minor injuries when his patrol car was struck. The pickup truck driver has been charged with leaving the scene of an accident, wrong-way driving and driving with an expired driver's license. His bond has been set at $20,000.
The second alleged drunk driving accident took place at about 10:50 p.m. Officers say that they were conducting an investigation at an accident scene on North Hydraulic Street near Interstate 135 and had blocked the southbound lanes when a southbound BMW sedan struck a patrol vehicle. The 37-year-old man behind the wheel of the BMW was taken into custody at the scene and charged with DUI, transporting an open container and careless driving. No injuries were reported.
Intoxicated drivers who are involved in accidents can face severe penalties. Experienced criminal defense attorneys may seek to have the penalties for DUI reduced during plea negotiations by offering prosecutors the opportunity to close cases quickly and avoid the risks of arguing before a jury. Attorneys might also seek to have drunk driving charges dismissed if their clients suffer from medical conditions that could influence breath test results or if police reports reveal that toxicology testing was not performed correctly or carried out using poorly maintained equipment.