In a recent post we shared the story of a 26-year-old man from an out-of-state case who used YouTube to make a DUI confession. It turns out that the young man took his words in the video and turned them into official legal action. In the past two weeks alone, he has made two different pleas in the case against him.
Last week, some were surprised by the choice that the DUI homicide defendant made to plead not guilty in court. Based on what he said in his now infamous YouTube video, anyone would have clearly thought that the defendant would quickly plead not guilty. It didn’t take long for last week’s surprising plea to change, however.
ABC News reports that the defendant appeared before a different judge on Wednesday and pleaded guilty to the serious charges before him. He is charged and has now pleaded guilty to aggravated vehicular homicide and driving under the influence. The plea lines up with his video account of how he claims he was clearly too drunk to drive on the night of June 22, 2013. His drunk driving, he claims, caused a crash and the death of a 61-year-old.
Though it is evident that pleading guilty is the criminal defense approach that the defendant is comfortable with, it will be valuable to see how his actions will impact the severe convictions he now faces. The court could choose to sentence the defendant to more than eight years in prison, but will it? Critics of the YouTube confessor suspect he is being so forthright about his actions in an attempt to avoid prison time entirely.
We will see what the future holds and post updates as there are developments.
Source: ABC News, “YouTube Drunken Driving Confessor Changes Plea to Guilty,” Kevin Dolak, Sep. 18, 2013