A St. Landry Parish man is accused of negligent homicide, criminal mischief and a string of other offenses after he allegedly ran out of gas on Kennerson Road in Opelousas, Louisiana, in early October. Authorities claim that after the man's Mitsubishi truck ran out of gas, the vehicle was left on the road. Police say that the Mitsubishi was in the traffic lane without any lights or emergency blinkers to mark its presence.
Authorities say that an Opelousas man riding a Yamaha motorcycle crashed into the stranded truck shortly after 7:00 in the evening. The rider was killed in the motorcycle accident--he was pronounced dead at the scene.
St. Landry Parish officials believe that the man who is accused of leaving the truck on the road fled the scene after the motorcycle crashed into the truck. Authorities later took the man into custody and booked him into the St. Landry Parish Jail without bond. In addition to the negligent homicide charge, authorities accuse the man of driving with a suspended license, expired registration and driving without insurance. Investigators also believe that the man filed a false report leading to the criminal mischief accusation.
Negligent homicide allegations after a fatal accident may at times involve some level of alcohol. However, the negligent homicide statute differs from a DWI-related vehicular homicide charge. The state must prove criminal negligence when bringing negligent homicide allegations and evidence of alcohol is not always a necessary element. A negligent homicide charge is a serious matter that can expose a person to prison time if convicted.
Source: The Advertiser, "Opelousas man arrested in motorcyclist's death," Oct. 23, 2013