Unlicensed And Drunk Driver Allegedly Crosses Into Opposing Traffic, Kills Teen, and Refuses To Call For An Ambulance . . . Then Blames Other Car For Accident

article-2357857-1AB4360E000005DC-839_306x423article-2357857-1AB435FA000005DC-467_306x423When Jessilyn Eisman, 16, crawled out of her friend’s wrecked car in Iowa, one friend (Chrishaun Moten, 17, right) was dead and two others seriously wounded. She called for the other driver to call for an ambulance but she says that Hilberto Velasquez-Ramirez, 31, refused. She says that he looked like he was going to drive away so she grabbed his keys and ran for help. Now Velasquez-Ramirez, who was drunk and driving without either insurance or a driver’s license, says it was the fault of the teenagers.

article-2357857-1AB43602000005DC-858_306x423The van had crossed into opposing traffic when it hit the car and killed Chrishaun Moten. Brenden Kniesly, 18, the driver of the car, and Philip Moffatt, 17, were seriously injured. Eisman was the least injured (right) and acted quickly to guarantee that the suspect did not flee and that medical attention was coming for her friends.

Velasquez-Ramirez was arrested on suspicion of homicide by vehicle, two counts of serious injury by vehicle, operating while intoxicated and having no driver’s license or proof of insurance. While blaming the teens, Velasquez-Ramirez admits that he consumed six beers before the crash. Additional beers were found in his van. He is being held due to uncertain immigration status.

Even without the illegal immigration status, this is not what one would call an easy defense case.  He was reportedly twice the legal limit for intoxication and found with additional beers in his van.  The van reportedly hit the car in opposing traffic and the driver was found both drunk and driving without a license or insurance. That would just about cover the criminal code from such accidents to guarantee a hefty sentence if convicted.

Source: Des Moines

35 thoughts on “Unlicensed And Drunk Driver Allegedly Crosses Into Opposing Traffic, Kills Teen, and Refuses To Call For An Ambulance . . . Then Blames Other Car For Accident”

  1. Gene, Firstly you have your facts wrong. In my original comment I mentioned 5 cases. The 1 case was a death case. The other 4 were serious injuries, including a nurse on her way home from working the 2nd shift that ended up a quadriplegic. That nurse might very well tell you it is not a “big step” between her current life as a quad, and being killed. I hope and pray not, but I think we can agree it’s a horrible way to have to live.

    As you might expect, being in the business, I know other attorneys, PI’s, etc. who have had similar cases in different venues. I used to read insurance trade journals, SIU newsletters, etc. that would report on similar cases across the US. Now, in another common scenario the offender pleads to the DUI, is given a short jail time and then supervision. As soon as he’s released from the jail he’s gone. Again, my end is the civil personal injury matter. So, for my purposes, the insurance companies purposes, and the plaintiff’s attorneys, the results are the same as if he skipped before pleading guilty or no contest.

    This is a nationwide problem and there is no uniformity on how to handle them. I surmise few, if any of these offenders, get bail in Texas, Az, etc. Ironically, this is a situation where insurance companies and plaintiff’s attorneys agree, since both end up on the shit end of the stick on these cases. Gene, I happen to live and work in the People’s Republic of Madison, where some of the judges would be @ the far end of the spectrum here, much less the general public. And 4 of my 5 cases are from that venue[Dane County]. So, I have just fessed up to a skew, that supports your take, w/o having to do so, but believing it should be done. Can I amend my remark from “often” to “too often” and settle this case. And, thanks for your assurance. I didn’t take it personally simply because the tenor of your comment didn’t seem personal.

  2. Actually, Velasquez-Ramirez’s status as an illegal immigrant is the one thing working in his favor. The Obama administration and most of the Democrats and Republicans are very strong in favor of illegal immigration. The Government has, in fact, gone out of its way to PUNISH those who attempt to “discriminate” against illegal immigrants. They are treated with such “royalty” by the government, that being an illegal immigrant is nearly akin to diplomatic immunity status.

    But in the end, the illegal immigrant status won’t matter too much if the evidence establishes that Velasquez-Ramirez crossed the median line into opposing traffic and was intoxicated. However, his illegal immigrant status may likely get him special treatment, with punishment and penalties at the lower end of the permissible ranges.

  3. The unseen God who made all that is seen and unseen knows that the drunk person is at fault. He cannot hide that. Why then try to hide that?

  4. Your RSS feed puts the pictures in the wrong order, so that it appears that the young man who was killed is the driver of the van.

  5. And we see again the problem with anecdotal evidence, nick. It’s statistically skewed. You are making a statement that is an assertion of something being generally true (“serious injury DUI cases, illegals are often granted bail”) based on a sample space of one (the case you worked). Another matter is it is a serious step up from serious injury to death. It’s a false equivalence. Can you say that in “death DUI cases, illegals are often granted bail” based on one episode as a valid statistical proposition in stating the outcome as being generally true? Doesn’t that statement require more evidence than one instance to be true “often”? The old axe often applied in law is that “once is an accident, twice is a coincidence but three times is a pattern” is an oversimplification but a nonetheless valid observation about the nature of evidence or statements being statistically valid.

    Don’t take this personally and I’m sure your anecdote is true, but do you see both the evidentiary and logical problems presented with the general pronouncement above? Primarily rooted in the use of the word “often” (as often addresses frequency and you cannot judge frequency on one data point)?

  6. GeneH, I understand that’s the conventional wisdom. And, in a death case like this, you’re probably correct. Although, as stated previously, I did work a DUI death case where the illegal immigrant was granted bail. The other driver, who was killed, was also intoxicated. This is Wisconsin! But, serious injury DUI cases, illegals are often granted bail.

  7. Making bail is probably not likely in this case. This guy has flight risk written all over him. It’ll likely be denied or set prohibitively high.

  8. raf, As I stated, depending on the police policy in that jurisdiction regarding contacting Immigration, he can be released on bail and face no consequences by fleeing back home. This is a big problem. If Immigration is contacted, they can place a detainer on this guy. So, if he does make bail, they can still hold him here until his trial. It’s a real crapshoot, depending on the local police/County Jail policy.

  9. Raff,

    In most cases All assaultive criminal proceedings must be completed before deportation proceedings can be held….

  10. Robinh, Virtually all of the reasons for illegal immigration are economical. If we were to deport every illegal immigrant in this country the restaurant industry would collapse, literally collapse. One of the reasons being, restaurant work is hard and lazy people don’t last 2 days. Anthony Bourdain speaks eloquently about the work ethic of Mexicans, and the lack of work ethic of many Americans.

  11. i know this statement is going to anger a few but so be it. the reason there are so many illegals here is for tax purposes. they can get 3-4 ilegals to work for the amount of 1 american that one american making about 12-15 hr is in a higher tax bracket then the 3-4 illegals. they also help the illegals break the hold of the middle class. so they have succeeded in making only 2 class of people the poor and the rich and im sure by now you all know how they feel about the poor. why would they hire an american who they have to pay so much money for 8 hrs of work a day when they can get 3-4 illegals to work for less then half the money for up to 16 hrs a day no benefits etc. besides the removal of the border is almost complete and real soon canada, mexico and the usa will be a union smfh making canadians and mexicans legal…

  12. This guy is the poster child for DUI defendants. I agree with Prof. Turley that this guy has an uphill battle in court. I hope he is tried before any deportation proceedings. He belongs in jail.

  13. I worked 5 personal injury cases just like this. A Mexican, illegal immigrant, DUI, death/serious injury, no license, no insurance. All 5 fled the US and retuned to Mexico. The plaintiffs only recourse were their uninsured motorist policy. On one of the cases the guy returned 2 years later under a different name. I found him working for the same employer he had when he was arrested, using his new name. I am for Immigration reform. I believe Mexican immigrants, legal or otherwise, are some of the best immigrants to ever come to this country. However, please understand, there are some bad people here illegally and there is a cost. You just read about one here. There are plenty more. I do not, and never have, supported the lenient policy toward contacting Immigration by some local police depts. when crimes are committed by illegal immigrants. In the aforementioned cases, all were released on bail in Madison, and fled before criminal adjudication, and obviously prior to civil remedies by the victims.

  14. Remove his arms and legs so he can’t drive ever again… Then lock him up for 50 years….

  15. It is the fault of the immigration laws. If he had been able to be legal he would not have needed to drink so much and so the accident would not have happened. This is also a case of immigrant bashing since his immigration status has nothing to do with the accident, except for the fact that he cannot legally get a license or insurance. He should be treated as any other US citizen, and allowed to make bail that he can afford. A few hundred dollars would be sufficient. Even if he is convicted, he should be allowed to serve his time in his home country, and he will be free in a few years at most.

    The girl who took his van keys should be prosecuted for attempted car theft and should be facing those charges. She too is undoubtedly a racist since she thought he would flee based on his color.

  16. Maybe his defense will try to get Judge Teresa Counts Burke to hear the case. She doesn’t like to be bothered by facts or evidence, so would be the perfect judge to hear this case….from the defense viewpoint.

  17. One thing for certain….he will certainly do time for driving without insurance…. Now, driving without a valid drivers license is not the cause of the accident….it’s traversing traffic lanes….drinking…..and the impact/crash will results in an enhanced vehicular manslaughter conviction…..

    My condolences to the family’s and the multiple losses….

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