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Former NBA Player Blaylock Charged With Vehicular Homicide

Friday, 14. June 2013

CC image Wikipedia.orgFormer NBA All-Star and Atlanta Hawk Mookie Blaylock has been charged with vehicular homicide after the SUV he was driving crossed the center line and killed a woman in a head-on crash.

According to the police report, Blaylock was driving his Cadillac Escalade on May 31 when he lost control of the vehicle. His SUV crossed the center line and collided head-on with a minivan carrying 43-year old Monica Murphy. Murphy later passed away at the hospital.

Blaylock’s driving record is littered with violations, which eventually led to the suspension of his license. In addition to the vehicular homicide charge, Blaylock has been charged with driving with a suspended license and failure to maintain his lane.

Determining the Cause

Officials are still trying to determine what caused Blaylock to lose control of the vehicle. Blaylock said he suffered a blackout while behind the wheel, but authorities wanted to conduct a blood test to see Blaylock had anything illegal in his system.

Although no alcohol or drugs were found in his system, authorities had good reason to suspect Blaylock may have been driving under the influence. A quick search of his driving record reveals that he has been cited for DUI on seven different occasions.

Blaylock was admitted to the hospital in critical condition following the crash, but he has since made a recovery. Medical personnel are assisting authorities in determining if Blaylock suffered a medical emergency that caused him to pass out behind the wheel.

From One Cell to Another

Blaylock was released into police custody after he was medically cleared. He was taken to the Clayton County jail, but later posted the $250,000 bond to secure his release. Despite posting bail, Blaylock was not free to go as he pleased. He was immediately taken into custody and brought to the Spalding County jail. It turns out Blaylock was a wanted man before he was involved in the accident that killed Murphy.

Blaylock had a warrant out for his arrest in Spalding County, where he was wanted for failure to appear in court for drug possession and DUI charges.

A Look at the Law

Although the charge could be upgraded if authorities discover new evidence that shows Blaylock was under the influence of an illegal substance, the former point guard was only charged with second-degree vehicular homicide. According to Georgia law, second-degree vehicular homicide is considered a misdemeanor, “that upon conviction will result in a sentence of up to one year or a fine of up to $1,000 (or both).” This charge is much less serious than a charge for first-degree vehicular homicide, which is categorized as a felony.  It carries a possible sentence of 3-15 years in prison and a much higher monetary fine. A person will automatically receive a first-degree charge if alcohol or drugs are found in their system.

Related sources: Yahoo, CBS, Allan M. Trapp Attorney at Law

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Avery Appelman is a criminal defense lawyer and the founder of Appelman Law Firm. While his practice is primarily recognized for its work with DWI and related offenses, he has 16 years of experience working with clients on drug, assault, theft, traffic, criminal sexual conduct, and prostitution charges.

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