Todd Harrell, the bassist for the band 3 Doors Down, lost his appeal of a DUI conviction yesterday, January 8, 2014. Harrell was convicted of a DUI in July of 2012 after slamming into a vehicle on Lemoyne Blvd in D’Iberville, Mississippi. He and his attorneys, Keith and Adam Miller, are claiming that Harrell was not under the influence of alcohol during the incident.
Witnesses testified that Harrell was driving at a high speed on the night of the incident and failed to hit the brakes before crashing into a pickup truck.
Lt. Paul Grote was a witness at the scene and rushed to Harrell after he hit the pickup.
“I asked, ‘Sir, are you okay?’ He gave me some kind of gargled response. I asked him if he was able to get out and he said, ‘Yes’. I did not notice any odor of intoxicating liquor. I did notice he was very slowed and slurred in speech. He was not quick to respond,” Grote testified.
The D’Iberville police officer also noticed that Harrell had slurred speech and kept nodding off.
However, the Mississippi Crime Lab’s toxicologist report showed no signs of alcohol in Harrell’s system.
So, why did Harrell seem drunk?
Well, the blood tests were positive for Valium, Xanex, and Oxicodone. That may not be a cocktail in the literal sense, but that is certainly a strong cocktail when it comes to prescription drugs.
Despite this evidence, Harrell’s attorneys, Keith and Adam Miller, claim that Harrell’s behavior may have been due to a head injury. They even called in Dr. Terry Millette who stated, “His behavior is consistent with closed head injury. Closed head injury symptoms can mimic impairment. You can’t make a distinction without a quantitative toxicology analysis.”
In the end, presiding Judge Robin Midcalf sided with the prosecution.
“I believe he was clearly too impaired, too impaired to be driving. He was clearly reckless,” Midcalf ruled.
As a result, Harrell now faces a $1,000 fine and must spend two days in the Harrison County Jail. However, the jail sentence has been suspended as long as Harrell can go six months without any legal troubles.
Harrell is also facing a vehicular homicide charge in Nashville, TN from an incident that occurred last April. Wow. Some people should definitely not be behind the wheel.
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