Damico & Stockstill, Attorneys at Law

Marine's attorney says dissociative episode behind DUI fatality, P.1

Our Baton Rouge readers may be interested in a national story involving Scott Sciple, a Marine who drove the wrong way down an interstate in Tampa last April and crashed head on into another vehicle, killing the other driver. The victim reportedly left behind a wife, two children and three stepchildren.

With a BAC over three times the legal limit in Florida at the time of the accident, Sciple was charged with DUI manslaughter. According to sources, he currently sits in a Tampa jail psychiatric ward waiting for his trial. The story, tragic on a number of levels, shows the complex nature of the situations leading to criminal charges.

Sciple-a Marine captain, three purple hearts and Bronze Star for his service in Afghanistan and Iraq-pleaded not guilty to the charges. According to the man's attorney, Brain injury and post-traumatic stress disorder caused him to black out in a dissociative event prior to the crash. Sources said his attorney will offer an insanity defense at his trial.

The victim's widow, understandably grieved, feels the military is partly to blame for the incident, in part for failing to treat Sciple's disorder. Interestingly, investigators in the Marine Corp, after examining the case, prepared an 860 page report agreeing with the widow.

According to the report, the Marine Corps should to be more attentive as to how it evaluates and treats post-traumatic stress disorder, particularly in Marines who have sustained brain injuries. According to Col John P. Crook, the Marine Corp continues to use an "anemic system of self-diagnosis and self-reporting."

In our next post, we'll continue looking at this story

Sources: ABC News, "Marine Claims Brain Trauma Led to Fatal DUI Crash," Tamara Lush, Sep 23, 2011.

No Comments

Leave a comment
Comment Information
Email Us For A Response

Need Help From An Experienced Team Of Trial Attorneys?

Use the form below to contact our attorneys directly. Contact us right now.

Bold labels are required.

Contact Information

The use of the Internet or this form for communication with the firm or any individual member of the firm does not establish an attorney-client relationship. Confidential or time-sensitive information should not be sent through this form.


Privacy Policy

Our lawyers have over 50 years of combined experience and are AV-rated* under Martindale Hubbell's peer review rating system.

*CV, BV and AV are registered certification marks of Reed Elsevier Properties Inc., used in accordance with the Martindale-Hubbell certification procedures, standards and policies. Martindale-Hubbell is the facilitator of a peer review rating process. Ratings reflect the confidential opinions of members of the Bar and the Judiciary. Martindale-Hubbell Ratings fall into two categories - legal ability and general ethical standards.

Damico & Stockstill, Attorneys at Law

8048 One Calais Avenue | Suite A | Baton Rouge, LA 70809-3483 | Phone: 225-250-1812 | Fax: 225-769-0195 | Baton Rouge Law Office Map