Miami, FL- A Miami man is facing up to 30 years in jail after prosecutors secured his conviction for an April 2012 drunk driving accident that left a 13 year-old girl dead.
It took the jury three hours to convict Sandor Guillen, a physical therapist from Coral Gables for vehicular homicide, DUI manslaughter and leaving the scene of an accident involving death, according to Miami Herald.
The Miami-Dade County judge had Guillen taken into custody immediately for what the Miami-Herald described as “one of the most horrific accidents in South Florida history.” His exact sentencing date has not been set but should be within the next few months.
Guillen was almost three times the legal limit when he plowed into a van carrying the Camacho family that April morning. Guillen slammed his SUV into the van with such force that it was torn in half. A cup holder from the van hit Kaely Camacho, 13, in the head, pierced her skull and she began to bleed profusely, according to CBS Miami. She was pronounced dead later at the hospital.
Guillen fled the scene of the accident and was found a short time afterward wandering in a field and listening to music on his cell phone. His car had slammed into a tree and spun around a few times He tried to tell police he was attacked by a couple of assailants to explain why he was injured.
After his arrest, Guillen’s blood alcohol level was .266, almost three times the legal limit one hour after the accident. A second Breathalyzer pegged his BAC at .246 over an hour after the deadly collision.
Guillen’s defense attorney said at trial that Camacho ran a red-light and caused the accident, but the jury rejected that defense and found Guillen guilty.
Although drunken driving accounts for one-third of fatal traffic accidents, not all people facing DUI charges are responsible for causing a dangerous or deadly collision. A large fraction of DUI offenders are never involved in an accident or cause harm to others.
All DUI offenders, regardless of how people feel about their actions, have the right to present a defense on their behalf. These offenders are serious facing jail time and need to have to build a strong defense. Or, they need to retain a DUI attorney who is capable of deftly negotiating with prosecutors to secure a plea deal or have the charges reduced.
If a DUI charge does not involve an accident, it may be possible for the offender to have their charged reduced and avoid the worst of the resulting penalties. A DUI attorney will evaluate the circumstance of each client’s case and determine which defense strategy will result in the best outcome for the offender.
In many cases, minor DUI offenders, backed up by the experience of a DUI attorney, will be able to stay out of jail and maintain their driving privileges. They may even be able to avoid conviction and keep a DUI from haunting them.