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Driver behind deadly D.C. car accident pleads insanity

It's a not-guilty defense that always garners a lot of media and public attention. Not guilty by reason of insanity. It's the kind of defense that movies are made of. In real life, however, it's a plea that's disgusting many in the Washington, D.C. community.

According to The Washington Post, a 31-year-old drunk driving defendant who killed a pedestrian in a car accident last year is trying to avoid up to 30 years in prison by highlighting her troubled past. Her defense attorney argues that because his client grew up in war-ridden Albania, she has post traumatic stress disorder, which contributed to her alleged criminal actions.

The female defendant is charged with a few crimes: drunk driving, hit-and-run and voluntary manslaughter. Last October, she was driving home from a party when she crashed into a 24-year-old who was getting out of a nearby car. The victim didn't survive her injuries - but the driver didn't stay around to learn that.

Due to the help of crash witnesses, police were able to identify the vehicle and its owner, leading them straight to the drunk hit-and-run suspect's home. They found her still behind the wheel of her SUV, smelling of alcohol. She didn't pass the authorities' sobriety tests and was arrested.

Lineups regarding witnesses in this case are in place. Witnesses to the accident are planned to testify for the prosecution. In a testimony that is sure to attract some publicity is a familiar psychiatrist, who will reportedly testify on behalf of the defense that the defendant suffers from PTSD. This expert witness is familiar because she also testified in the notorious 1994 Lorena Bobbitt case.

Our source includes no mention of a civil case as a result of the deadly accident. We will include more information when there is an update in this story.


The Washington Post: "Hit-and-run defense points to stress disorder," Keith L. Alexander, 7 Jun. 2011

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