Man to be Charged With Getting Driver Drunk

Discussion in 'Too Hot for Swamp Gas' started by Minister_of_Information, Aug 25, 2013.

  1. Minister_of_Information
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    Minister_of_Information I'm your huckleberry Premium Member

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    Personal responsibility and accountability, a value that is dying a slow death in America.

    http://www.myfoxhouston.com/story/2...pring-man-who-bought-drinks-for-nicole-baukus

  2. MichiGator2002
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    MichiGator2002 VIP Member

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    I always loosely accepted the premise of a dramshop statute, but that basically puts some liability on the proprietor for being willing to serve. I am really uncomfortable with criminal liability for this kind of thing. Let survivors try to sue in negligence, okay, but I see no crime here.
  3. wygator
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    wygator Well-Known Member

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    As the OP states, let's see the statute that Duran violated...
  4. Lawdog88
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    Lawdog88 Well-Known Member

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    In a related kind of circumstance, I have a lady who asked me to do some criminal liability research on a situation where her son overdosed in the presence of "friends," but there were indications that there may have been more that one needle mark; the $3,000 he had on his person was missing after his body was found; and the friends who set him up with the pusher man and took him there to get his final fix, had to drag him to his car after he shot - or was shot - up, drove him home, dragged him into his house, and failed to notify the authorities or call for medical assistance . . . until he was long gone.

    She wanted to know if there was any way to hold the "friends" accountable, because the police say no.

    I haven't found any way to do so yet, but it does just . . . seem . . . like there would be a duty - at minimum - to act in that circumstance, and that a failure to do so would be criminally negligent.

    Of course, if it could be proven that "the friends" actually injected the decedent, different ballgame.
  5. Gatorrick22
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    Gatorrick22 Well-Known Member

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    This sounds like they murdered this person for his money using drugs.
  6. Lawdog88
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    Lawdog88 Well-Known Member

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    I agree, Rick. The only problem is proof.
  7. 92gator
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    92gator Well-Known Member

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    Your case sounds much more eggregious than the OP.

    In the OP, the guy was just getting the person drunk--really, just buying her drinks. It's not like she was forced to drink, and more significantly, forced to drive. She could have called a cab.

    In your case, they're dealing with illegal drugs, an illegal transaction, manipulating him to go to the dealer ('set him up with the pusher and took him [there]'), assisting him with the transaction (presumably--if he was too messed up to go on his own accrod, he must have needed assistance), then dumping him off at his house ('dragged him to his house'), when he was apparently in need of medical attention.

    You should be able to find civil liablity there--duty of care, breach of duty, obvious injury resulting from that breach, forseeability (i.e.--generic tort/negligence theory, among other potential tort theories)...though criminal culpability would of course be a matter of prosecutorial discretion--but if they're willing to go after it in Houston under OP's circumstances, you should have a better case under your circumstances, in FLA, so it would be a matter of getting the prosecutorial authority on board. Involuntary manslaughter, seems a pretty good bet.

    IMHO.
  8. 92gator
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    92gator Well-Known Member

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    I never cared for 'dram shop' liablity theory, and in this case, that much less (ok, not necessarily dram shop--but a species of it, and an even bigger stretch at that). Was it foreseeable that she might get in car, drive, and get in a wreck? Sure. But drinking to excess is so common place, and even driving afterwards--that the presumption is that the person will arrive at their destination safely--but either way, the presumtion remains that they retain enough judgment to make that call themselves....and certainly each drink that the person consumes, its calculated effects, and the aggregate effect, is/are a matter of personal responsiblity.

    It's clearly a tragedy, but a guy buying someone drinks doesn't thereby transfer personal responsability for consuming them, and then deciding to drive--decisions made by the woman for whom the drinks were purchased--to the person who merely enabled those wrong decisions, by buying the drinks for her.

    She could have declined the drinks--or accepted them, but not consumed them--and eitehr way, she could (should) have, elected not to get behind the wheel.

    ...course I'm operating out of an antiquated book here--known as common sense.

    (I can be kind of a dinosaur like that...).

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