December 28, 2007

Leyritz Arrested On Suspicion Of DUI, Manslaughter. : Former MLB catcher Jim Leyritz, one of the heroes of the Yankees' 1996 World Series Championship, was arrested early this morning following an accident that killed a 30-year-old woman in Fort Lauderdale, Florida. Leyritz, who turned 44 on Thursday, refused a sobriety test after being told that the other driver had died.

posted by The_Black_Hand to baseball at 07:23 PM - 14 comments

The man should not be free for the rest of his life.

posted by aerotive at 08:49 PM on December 28

Sounds to me like he was definetly drinking since he refused a sobriety test after being told that someone had been killed.Shame on Mr.Leyritz if in fact this is true.I'd think that is something you'd want to be cleared of if you weren't drinking and driving.

posted by Ghastly1 at 09:12 PM on December 28

I tried to post this earlier, and I agree totally with aerotive. He was out drinking to celebrate his birthday and then smashes into an innocent person who was minding her own business, going home after a long evening at work. Now two kids have lost their mother and I hope he loses his freedom for a long time. I know about the presumption of innocence and the fact that he is not convicted, YET, but this guy really screwed up. Here's a link to the official police report.

posted by weeklyguy at 10:28 PM on December 28

Leyritz's refusal to be tested gives him a stronger chance of acquittal. It doesn't sound like his blood was tested until three hours after the accident. I knew someone who took a mother away from kids by getting behind the wheel drunk. I don't know how it's possible to live with yourself after that, no matter what the prison sentence ends up being.

posted by rcade at 11:29 PM on December 28

I don't know how it's possible to live with yourself after that, no matter what the prison sentence ends up being I agree, rcade I think it would haunt your for the rest of your life. Even if he doesn't do any time, he would have to be a real douchebag to not feel remorse. What I never get is why these guys don't hire a driver for these occasions.

posted by steelergirl at 11:51 PM on December 28

One sad aspect is that his refusal to submit to a blood alcohol content test is an acceptable defense these days. For God's sake, if you screw up do every thing that you can to hide it, deny it, weasel out of any responsibility. Of course if he does get nailed by the legal system he can always try the politician's ploy - look all teary-eyed and give a "sincere" apology. I make a prediction right now that if he's a first time offender he gets off with no jail time.

posted by whitedog65 at 01:12 AM on December 29

Hmm, I'm wondering about this 3 hour period before they took his blood. In my state, we have "implied consent". When you sign for your drivers license you sign that you agree to submit to a blood test. If you say "no thank you" they take you to hospital, strap you down and take your blood. If what you did killed someone, they do a different kind of blood draw. They take it as soon as you get to the hospital, then again after certain periods of time. What this does is show the jury the point of drunkenness you were at the time of the accident. I.e. If you test at .08 on first draw then .10 15 minutes later, it means you likely consumed alchohol immediately before getting behind the wheel. If you tested at .08 on first draw then .04 on the second it still gives a relative indication that you had stopped drinking some time before you got behind the wheel. Either way I dont see how his refusal will result in an aquittal unless it really did take them three hours to get his blood. If anything the refusal may sway the jury out of any tearful I'm sorry's. "why did you try to hide it the" type things.

posted by firecop at 12:03 PM on December 29

In a lot of states you are allowed to refuse the breath test provided that there has been no property damage or injuries. Clearly that wasn't the case here. They should have had him at a hospital as soon as they suspected he'd been drinking. In any event, I agree with firecop that the teary "I'm sorries" aren't going to play well to a jury. Why is it that all of these people of means are too cheap to take a taxi or hire a driver?

posted by Tinman at 12:25 PM on December 29

Laws are written by lawyers, we should remember, and defense attorneys need the occasional win to keep new business coming in.

posted by billsaysthis at 02:29 PM on December 29

I know in Mass.,if you refuse a Breathalizer test,you automatically lose your licence for 90 days.But know your talking about a death involved,so thats a whole different story.As far as the blood tests here,I'm not sure about the laws on that.Does anyone know if this is his first offense?

posted by Ghastly1 at 03:40 PM on December 29

Firecop (or anyone else that may be able to answer); Is it possible for alcohol content in the blood to be extrapolated to give a level that was likely in the bloodstream at the time of an accident? If so, wouldn't that information be admissible to prove guilt or innocence? It seems to me that if a person has a blood alcohol level of 0.03 three hpurs after an accident and that level (assuming the body does not normally create alcohol on it's own) correlates to say a level of 0.10 at the time of the accident, a person can be ruled to have been DUI at the time of the accident.

posted by Cave_Man at 04:22 PM on December 29

Either way I dont see how his refusal will result in an aquittal unless it really did take them three hours to get his blood. His refusal increases his chances of acquittal by denying the state a crucial piece of evidence -- his blood alcohol level at the time of the incident. People talk about how wrong it was for him to refuse the test, and how it shows he was drunk, but strictly in terms of legal liability, he managed to help himself considerably. DUI manslaughter is not an exceptionally harsh felony in Florida. There's even a provision in the law for giving someone their license back five years after being convicted of committing it.

posted by rcade at 04:43 PM on December 29

Cave_Man, everybody's body metabolizes alcohol at a different rate from one another. It depends on many factors, such as what the person has ate or drank since their last alcoholic beverage, what kind of actions that they were doing since then also. Any over the counter or prescription drugs could also speed up or slow down the metabolism. So it is highly unlikely that any medical testing could be done to figure out a BAC from prior, from a sample being taken now, to any reasonable degree of certainty. However, even if it could, would you really want the authorities to be able to charge you with anything based on a test that said you did something that maybe nobody even saw you do? (Obviously I am not talking about this case.)

posted by jojomfd1 at 08:37 PM on December 29

The man should not be free for the rest of his life. posted by aerotive at 8:49 PM CST on December 28 Absolutely agree. Lock him up...

posted by BoriQa at 10:41 AM on January 13

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