Crime News for Salinas (06/30/2010)
Salinas man charged in teenager's DUI
McLaughlin accused of providing alcohol before fatal crash
A Salinas man faces jail time and fines if convicted of providing alcohol to a teen who killed his friend in a drunken-driving crash early New Year's Day, authorities said Tuesday.
Chief Assistant District Attorney Terry Spitz said that Timothy McLaughlin, 41, was charged last week with three misdemeanors related to providing alcohol to a minor.
Alexander Gordon Winn pleaded guilty in March to a felony charge of vehicular
manslaughter while intoxicated without gross negligence. On May 18, Winn was sentenced to five years of probation and a year in Monterey County Jail.
At 2:25 a.m. New Year's Day, Winn, who was 18 at the time, was driving a Chevrolet
Silverado on Corral de Tierra Road off Highway 68. McLaughlin has an address off Highway 68 near Salinas.
Winn lost control of the truck while navigating a curve just west of Underwood Road. He crashed into an uphill embankment, and the truck rolled onto its side.
Adam E. Arias, a 19-year-old graduate of Salinas High School who was riding in the truck,
died at the scene. Another passenger, Janelle Powers, 18, received minor injuries.
The judge pointed out during Winn's sentencing that all three teens were drinking that night, downing beer and vodka shots, before they got into the truck.
If convicted, Spitz said, McLaughlin faces up to a year in jail, a fine or both, in each of the
following two charges: providing alcohol to a minor resulting in the minor injuring someone
and contributing to the delinquency of a minor. McLaughlin faces a fine and 24 hours of community service if convicted of providing alcohol to a minor, he said.
McLaughlin is expected to appear in court on July 13.
Spitz said he does not know the relationship between McLaughlin and Winn, or how the older man provided the teen with alcohol.
California Alcohol Beverage Control spokesman John Carr said the agency began investigating the source of the alcohol soon after the crash. Carr referred questions to the
District Attorney's Office, which provided little information because of the ongoing case.
He said, however, that the investigator spoke to several people in the six-month investigation.
"[The investigator] started putting facts together ... to hold someone accountable to furnishing alcohol to a minor who was later involved in a car crash," Carr said.
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