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Soquel area man to face felony DUI charge

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A 21-year-old Soquel area man was arrested Friday on a DUI charge that allegedly occurred in November. The 21-year-old had previously appeared in court in February related to the November 18 allegations. The man was undergoing physical therapy for injuries and was previously released with conditions. Law enforcement claims the 21-year-old violated his conditional release and arrested the man Friday.

Authorities claim the 21-year-old was found to have a bag of marijuana and an empty beer can in his room. The judge reportedly had ordered the 21-year-old to abstain from alcohol and drugs as part of his conditions of release at the February court appearance. Prosecutors argued Friday for bail to be set at $100,000 in the felony DUI case. The judge set bail Friday at $75,000. The 21-year-old reportedly posted bond Friday evening and was released from custody.

The current allegations arose related to an incident that allegedly occurred November 18, 2010. Police claim the 21-year-old lost control of his 1991 Toyota pickup truck and crashed into a tree. After the accident, the 21-year-old was charged with DUI. Prosecutors claim the man has a prior accident on his record where two people were killed.

The prior incident was handled in the juvenile court system when the man was 17-years-old. The prior incident reportedly was adjudicated as a vehicular homicide case. Although handled in juvenile court, California law allows certain serious offenses to be made public. Prosecutors are now relying on the prior adjudication for vehicular homicide to support a felony level DUI in the current allegations.

The 21-year-old is scheduled to appear in court for a preliminary hearing in the matter on April 21.

Source: Santa Cruz Sentinel, "Soquel man involved in double-fatal DUI crash jailed," Cathy Kelly 1 Apr 2011

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