Alabama DUI Defense News: Defendant Charged in Fatal DUI Accident Requests Defense-related Costs

Posted by Steven Eversole | Mar 10, 2010 | 0 Comments

It's no secret that defending against drunken driving charges can be costly. However, not getting the proper defense can be just as expensive, and not simply in financial terms, but also the restricted lifestyle that a DUI conviction can cause. As a Birmingham drunk driving defense attorney, I can say without hesitation that court fines and fees coupled with increased insurance premiums following a conviction for driving under the influence of alcohol can add up to a substantial hit on one's wallet.

Add to these economic penalties the possible loss of driving privileges and potential impact on person's job and future earning potential, and you have a perfect example of why hiring an experienced DUI lawyer can be priceless. Wherever you live or work, be it Montgomery, Prattville, Anniston or Opelika, the most important step is to avoid drinking and driving in the first place.

The reason for this is simple: Being pulled over for DUI is one thing, but being arrested for hurting or killing another person as a result of drunk driving is a whole other story. Not long ago, an Alabama man charged with DUI-related vehicular homicide asked the court for thousands of dollars in public money to assist in his defense — at the time of the news report, the judge was still considering the request.

The history of this case goes back to the summer of 2007. According to reports, 21-year-old John Waldrop John Waldrop is accused of hitting and killing Amanda Larpenter, 22, of Gray, LA. The Mobile man has been jailed since his arrest back in July of that year since he could not come up with the $1 million bond.

During a recent hearing, Waldrop told the judge in the case that he had no money to pay for three experts the defense claims it needs to counter the testimony expected from the state's witnesses. Based on news articles, the former shipyard repairman testified that his grandparents in Mobile already had spent about $12,000 — taken from a checking account he shared with his grandmother and by selling a truck and motorcycle.

Each of the three experts is reportedly qualified in a field related to the case, including car-wreck reconstruction, field sobriety tests and alcohol breath-test machines. Those expert witnesses reportedly would charge in the neighborhood of $200 or more per hour, with each logging an expected 10 hours of work.

Last June, Waldrop unexpectedly refused a deal for 15 years in prison in exchange for a guilty plea. If convicted on the vehicular homicide charge, the man could receive between five and 30 years in prison and be fined between $2,000 and $15,000.

Defendant asks courts for defense money,, February 10, 2010

About the Author

Steven Eversole

J.D., Samford University's Cumberland School of Law, Birmingham, Alabama B.A., University of Alabama, Tuscaloosa, Alabama


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