Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Jaguar Driver Charged with Vehicular Manslaugter after Causing Fatal Car Accident

Pamela Mckeirnan described in court yesterday how a speeding jaguar hit her car and then spun into the Volvo behind her that was carrying her daughter and grand daughter on State Route 67.

Her daughter Alexandria was killed but miraculously, her 4 month old grand daughter survived March 2009 crash.

The driver of the Jaguar, Melvin Leroy Pearles, 48, will be charged with vehicular manslaughter and is now in custody with bail set at $75,000.

If convicted, he may face up to 6 years in prison.

The judge said that Pearles showed extreme callousness and impatience on a very dangerous road and he is suspected to be involved in some form of speed contest.

According a testimony given to CHP by Pearles, he was speeding because he had to go to the bathroom and he feared being hit by a white BMW that eventually passed him.

However a witness said that he can’t believe how fast the Jaguar was going and he remembers it trying to pass a white car, which was later identified as a BMW.

The witness said his car was run off the road and the next he saw was the wreck of the Volvo.

Deputy Public Defender Dawn Beebee said the accident was tragic but it did not rise to the level of negligence.

Pearles’ answer to a police officer when asked if he knew he was driving at 80-100 mph did not help him as well. He told police that it was possible because he was driving a jaguar and “doesn’t drive 55.”

That would have come off not only as arrogant but also as admission that he was speeding.

The speed limit for Route 67 is 55 mph; he just admitted that he doesn’t drive 55.

His offense can automatically be raised from speeding to reckless driving if it is true that he is driving at least 80 mph and if he was involved in a speed contest.

Since his reckless driving resulted to death, the prosecutors have all the reasons to charge him with vehicle manslaughter.

Aside from that, the family can also file a wrongful death suit for his civil liability.