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Judge Sets Bond in Fatal Single-Vehicle Accident in Bartow

Posted on October 12, 2010

A teenager will be facing trial in the DUI manslaughter death of his friend last July in Bartow, Florida, according to TheLedger.com. Augustus Clint Dawes, 19, was arrested Monday, October 4, and also charged with DUI with personal injury for the single-car accident.

Dawes had a blood alcohol level of 0.167 when authorities say he drove east on Scenic Highway in his 2002 Ford pickup truck on July 7. He and his friend, Daniel Alan Hull, 18, were in the truck along with Hull’s brother James, who was in the backseat.

According to authorities, Dawes lost control of his truck around a curve at North Lake Moody Road in Babson Park and the vehicle went into a spin, ejecting Daniel, who was in the front passenger seat. Hull was pinned under the truck and died at the scene. He was not wearing a seat belt. His younger brother, James, 17, was wearing his seatbelt and received minor injuries, as did Dawes.

The Ledger reports Circuit Judge John Kirkland set bond at $10,000 for the fatality, and $500 for personal injury. Dawes admitted to authorities that he had consumed two beers. His blood alcohol level was just over double the legal limit for intoxication.

Teen Driver Statistics
Teen driver fatalities decreased between 2008 and 2009 by 20.7% from 193 to 153 deaths, according to the Florida Department of Highway Safety and Motor Vehicles (FDHSMV). The number of vehicle crashes involving teens also declined from 32,012 in 2008 to 29,485 in 2009.

The state also reports that Florida drivers in the 14-19 age group had the highest rate per 10,000 licensed drivers of crash involvement. We know that seat belts save lives, but FDHSMV states that when a front-seat passenger wears a lap and shoulder belt, the risk of serious injury is reduced by as much as 50%.

Our condolences are extended to the family of Mr. Hull. The Florida auto accident injury attorneys of Farah & Farah would like to remind all motorists to buckle their seat belts when they get into a passenger vehicle.