I was recently retained to investigate an accident where four people were injured by a drunk driver; we’ll call him Mr. L. On a Sunday morning, Mr. L and Mrs. L got up at 6:30AM to play golf with their friends. The four spent the day together as the husbands played golf and drank beer. After the game, they went to dinner where the men continued to drink.
By 10:30PM, Mr. and Mrs. L went to leave their friend’s home. Mr. L, aware of his condition, gave the keys to Mrs. L. About 5 miles from their friend’s home, Mrs. L, after a long day with no alcohol, swerved across the double yellow line, head on into a family of four. The air bags in their Honda Odyssey deployed and the “Ls” were not hurt, but the other family sustained several broken bones. Following the impact, Mr. L exited across his wife, out the driver door for whatever reason, causing witnesses to tell the police that Mr. L was driving the car.
At the insistence of Mr. L, I went to see the car. When I realized the airbags had deployed, I documented and removed them. I then transported them to a Los Angeles County Court approved independent laboratory where they were tested for DNA. Low and behold, the only DNA on the driver’s airbag was Mrs. L. When this information was given to the LA County Sheriff’s investigator, he initially questioned whether or not I mixed up the airbags and had the passenger side tested. Since the driver is round and in the shape of the steering wheel and the passenger in the shape of a large rectangular pillow, I thanked him, but assured him there was no chance of such a mix up.
The district attorney prosecuting the case, requested we turn the airbags over for the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s lab to test. I did that. They have not yet disclosed whether or not this was done, but have offered Mr. L a deal for no jail time.
I have tried to contact Jackie Lacey and, both candidates for district attorney to ask why the department is wasting taxpayer money. To date, no one has contacted me to explain or answer this question. They use DNA to convict people. They use DNA to release people falsely accused, So why is this DNA not conclusive or good enough for them all of a sudden?
The simple truth is this is one of thousands of issues of money wasted needlessly by county representatives being irresponsible, careless and abusive in their handling of taxpayer money. These are the same people that turn around and ask us to vote for initiatives to give them more money. I believe responsible management of these types of cases would go a long way to resolve their fiscal issues.