Category: News

DUI for Henrico Pastor

Pastor Charged with DUI and Reckless Driving in Henrico, VA

DUI drugs Virginia Jay Bertrand
Jay Bertrand is charged with DUI in Henrico County

The pastor of a Varina church is charged with DUI in Henrico County, Virginia. He also faces a reckless driving charge for an accident that occurred earlier that day.

Police say Jay Bertrand, co-pastor of Varina Baptist Church, was arrested for DUI just hours after he was released from the hospital for injuries he received after running into a Krispy Kreme store.

The first accident occurred when Bertrand crossed three lanes of oncoming traffic, hit a sidewalk and rammed into the Krispy Kreme on Broad Street.

According to Bertrand’s family, he suffers from serious back problems and the crash was a result of a medical emergency. They say his back seized up while he was driving and he could not move. Bertrand was taken to an area hospital but refused treatment.

Hours after leaving the hospital, Bertrand was involved in another accident. Police say he failed to move when a stoplight on Patterson Avenue turned green, causing the woman behind him to drive around his vehicle. When the driver stopped at the following intersection, Bertrand ran into her. The driver was not injured. Bertrand told police he did not remember what happened.

Bertrand takes medications for his back problems. His family says that all the medications he takes are prescribed by a doctor and that the doctor had given him full liberty to drive and operate machinery. They emphasize that this was not a case of alcohol or drug abuse.

Bertrand is charged with reckless driving in the Krispy Kreme accident and driving under the influence of drugs (DUI) for the second incident in Henrico, VA.

Weiland Upton is a leading firm of Virginia DUI Lawyers

Call (804) 355-8037  for a free consultation

Guilty of Reckless Driving in Dinwiddie

Woman Guilty of Virginia Reckless Driving

A woman pled guilty to reckless driving in a multi-vehicle accident that killed three people on Interstate 85 in Dinwiddie, Virginia.

Louise M. Vanloan pleaded guilty to reckless driving in the Dinwiddie General District Court. Vanloan was fined $200 as a result. The Court also suspended her license to drive for six months.

According to the Richmond Times-Dispatch, Vanloan was driving a Coach America bus carrying 49 students from North Carolina A&T State University. The bus was heading northbound on I-85 when the accident occurred.

The bus crashed into the pickup truck from behind, sandwiching it between the two larger vehicles. Three passengers in the pickup truck died; a fourth passenger was taken to a local hospital and later released. Vanloan was treated for minor injuries.Virginia State Police say the accident occurred as traffic along the interstate was diverted to the left lane due to road repairs. A logging truck, the first of the three vehicles involved in the accident, was stopped on the highway due to traffic, followed by a pickup truck carrying four passengers, including the three victims.

The Dinwiddie Commonwealth’s Attorney reviewed the state police investigation of the crash and chose not to charge Vanloan with manslaughter, stating there was no indication of criminal wrongdoing. However, reckless driving is a misdemeanor in the Commonwealth of Virginia and carries the potential of hefty fines, jail time and driver’s license suspension (Dinwiddie reckless driving).

Are you in need of a Virginia Reckless Driving Lawyer?

Call Weiland Upton at (804) 355-8037 for a free consultation

Reckless driving accident in Prince George, VA

Virginia Reckless Driving Crash

VA Reckess Driving accident
Emergency crews shutdown I-95

Police charged Michelle Witzel with reckless driving after a serious accident in Prince George County,Virginia, just south of Petersburg. The accident injured four people, and Interstate 95 northbound was temporarily shut down to allow a medical helicopter to land. No other vehicles were involved.

Witzel and her 11-year-old-son were flown to VCU Medical Center with serious injuries. Police shut down I-95 in Prince George for an hour to allow the helicopter to land and transport the patients to the hospital.

According to eye-witness reports, the single-vehicle crash occurred when Witzel, who was driving a 2002 Toyota Sequoia, tried to switch lanes but overcorrected to avoid hitting a vehicle in her blind spot. The SUV ran off the right side of the road and flipped over several times.

Witzel and her son both suffered serious injuries and were flown by helicopter to VCU Medical Center. Their injuries are said to be non-life threatening. Witzel’s two daughters, who were also passengers in the vehicle, were both taken by ambulance to Southside Regional Medical Center in Petersburg, Virginia. They suffered only minor injuries.

Police say all the passengers in the vehicle were wearing seat belts. Due to the accident, Witzel is now charged with reckless driving in Prince George County, Virginia.

Click here for the full story from CBS6.

Weiland Upton is a leading firm of Virginia Reckless Driving Lawyers

Call (804) 355-8037 for a free consultation

Man sentenced to five years for fatal Richmond DUI

VA DUI Gets 5 Years Jail Time

A Richmond, Virginia man has been sentenced to five years in prison for his role in a fatal, DUI-related hit-and-run that occurred in December near the John Marshall Courts Building.

Richmond Circuit Judge Bradley B. Cavedo sentenced Andre U. Vaughan to five years for his conviction on involuntary manslaughter, ten years with all ten suspended for felony hit-and-run charge, and twelve months with all but five days suspended for the DUI.

fatal dui driver gets 5 years

Vaughan has an extensive history of convictions involving domestic violence, but it was his lengthy history of substance and alcohol abuse which appears to have made the greatest impact in sentencing. Vaughan’s ex-wife was unaware of earlier convictions for driving offenses in Virginia, but did testify to Vaughan’s inability to overcome his addictions as he struggled with a life of alcohol and substance abuse.

Vaughan struck the victim, Bruce Lee Carter, near Clay 8th St in downtown Richmond VA and the incident was caught on closed-circuit TV from downtown cameras, which caught the moment of impact as Carter was sent sprawling ten feet. Vaughan initially fled the scene, but was soon spotted by police officers with a caved in windshield and damaged side mirror.

Vaughan was clearly intoxicated according to reports from officers called to the scene.

Vaughan pled guilty to all charges brought against him, including  felony hit and run and involuntary manslaughter (fatal Richmond DUI).

Click here for the full story from the Richmond Times-Dispatch.

Weiland Upton is a leading firm of Virginia DUI Lawyers

Call (804) 355-8037 for a no obligation consultation

Motorcycles Driving Side By Side

Effective July 1, 2012, motorcycles will be permitted to drive side by side two abreast.  This represents a change in the law that did classify such activity as reckless driving.  The revised statute now reads as follows:

A person shall be guilty of reckless driving who drives any motor vehicle, including any motorcycle, so as to be abreast of another vehicle in a lane designed for one vehicle, or drives any motor vehicle, including any motorcycle, so as to travel abreast of any other vehicle traveling in a lane designed for one vehicle. However Nothing in this section shall be construed to prohibit two two-wheeled motorcycles from traveling abreast while traveling in a lane designated for one vehicle. In addition, this section shall not apply to (i) any validly authorized parade, motorcade, or motorcycle escort, or law-enforcement officers driving motorcycles while on official duty; (ii) a motor vehicle traveling in the same lane of traffic as a bicycle, electric personal assistive mobility device, electric power-assisted bicycle, or moped; nor shall it apply to (iii) any vehicle when lawfully overtaking and passing one or more vehicles traveling in the same direction in a separate lane.

Ignition Interlock Required For All DUI Convictions!

Pursuant to a recent change in Virginia law, for any conviction of a DUI  on or after July 1, 2012, the offender must have an ignition interlock installed in his or her vehicle as a condition to receiving a restricted license.  Prior to this change in the law, ignition interlock was only required when (1) the offender’s BAC was equal to or greater than .15 or (2) when the offender was convicted of a second or subsequent DUI offense within a 10 year period. Therefore, individuals convicted of a DUI, even if the BAC is very low, will face the expensive prospect of ignition interlock in order to drive to and from  work or other driving permitted by the restricted license.