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Washington man faces felony charges after early release

On Behalf of | Jan 5, 2016 | Criminal Defense |

A man who was apparently wrongly released from prison due to a software error is facing criminal charges with regard to a motor vehicle accident that occurred about three months after his early release, according to local law enforcement. The Washington state prisoner was released early (as were some 3,200 other inmates, dating back to 2002), thanks to a coding error in software involving prison records. The man faces felony charges in relation to a car accident that killed the man’s girlfriend in early November. 

The 38-year-old man was apparently released from prison on Aug. 10, 2015, some four months earlier than the correct release date. He was serving time for robbery with a deadly weapon and was reportedly not due for release until Dec. 6.  On Nov. 11 he was apparently involved in a car accident that apparently killed his 35-year-old girlfriend, who was a passenger in the vehicle he was allegedly driving at the time. 

Few details of the accident have been released, but it has been reported the man faces charges for felony hit-and-run and vehicular homicide. Officers responsible for his arrest claim he was driving recklessly. They also suggest he was under the influence of drugs and/or alcohol at the time of his arrest, which occurred sometime after he allegedly fled the scene of the crash. 

Regardless of the man’s prior criminal record or the fact he was apparently released from prison too early, Washington prosecutors must still prove the man is actually guilty of the crimes charged regarding the fatal accident. For example, there was no mention in the media report of a Breathalyzer or blood test to ascertain the man’s alleged intoxication. If prosecutors cannot prove he was drunk, high and or/speeding, one or more of the felony charges against him may be reduced or dropped entirely. 

Source: correctionsone.com, “Wash. prisoner freed early is charged in deadly wreck“, Dec. 31, 2015