It is not strange to see an entire DUI case collapse in the face of lack of key evidence. This is exactly what happened in a recent Greenville county case which involved a teen DUI and a fatality. Savannah Hutchinson, 17, had been charged with felony DUI after the car she was driving crashed, resulting in the death of a friend who was riding with her. But No DUI Penalties for Greenville Teen After Clean BAC Results.
Hutchinson was booked for aggravated DUI by the prosecutors. This was done solely on the testimony of the troopers at the scene who reported that her vehicle ‘smelled like beer.’ Officer testimony is often the key reason behind a DUI arrest and charge. But as the judge in this case demonstrated, such testimony without real evidence means little to nothing.
When Hutchinson’s DUI charge came up in the court, BAC results were examined. As per these results, Hutchinson’s blood contained no traces of drugs or alcohol. This was a huge blow to the prosecution’s case against the teen. According to the Solicitor Walk Wilkins, the judge threw out the case upon hearing the BAC results.
Naturally, a DUI case simply can’t go forward if BAC results prove that the driver was not under the influence. The crux of a DUI charge lies on the assumption that the driver was impaired. It was only when the impairment can be proved that DUI penalties apply. In the case of Hutchinson, the BAC results proved that there was no impairment.
Highway Patrol report of the accident states that Hutchinson or the two other passengers in the case were not wearing seat belts. This largely contributed to the death of one of the passengers when the car ran off the road. Although Hutchinson is not likely to receive any DUI penalties, she may still face charges of reckless driving that resulted in a fatality.