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Driver pleads not guilty to DWI after crashing into cyclists

A driver accused of killing a cyclist and critically injured another cyclist in a January 2012 accident on Perkins Road in Baton Rouge has been charged with vehicular homicide, first-degree vehicular negligent injuring and second-offense DUI. The driver has reportedly pleaded not guilty to the charges

In addition to the criminal case, the injured cyclist has filed a civil suit, claiming that the driver drank numerous alcoholic beverages at The Bulldog prior to the accident, and was visibly intoxicated. The cyclist is suing the bar as well, claiming that providing alcohol to the driver makes it responsible for the ensuing accident.

The accident reportedly occurred when the two cyclists were travelling east in the 6100 block of Perkins Road near Quail Run Drive in the evening when the driver slammed into them from behind and ran them over. The one biker died at the scene, while the other was hospitalized with several broken bones.

The 29-year-old man accused of causing the accident reportedly had a blood-alcohol level of .307 percent at the time of the crash, well above the legal limit of .08 percent. As our readers may know, a blood alcohol content of .08 percent or greater is considered preemptive evidence of drunken driving in the state of Louisiana, as well as in other states.

According to Troy Herbert, the State Alcohol and Tobacco Control Commissioner, there is no evidence that the bar acted improperly. The Bulldog is listed as a witness in the criminal case.

Sources do not detail the defendant's reason for pleading not guilty, nor what his strategy will be at trial.

Source: The Advocate, "Injured cyclist suing driver in collision," Joe Gyan Jr., January 19, 2013

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