Plea Deal for Honor Student in DWI Trial


Bethany Leigh Denman was by all counts a very intelligent girl.  She was a Sam Houston State University honors student.  She was a biological science major there and made the dean’s list and had taken the MCAT test to go to medical school.  Despite all of her accomplishments she made a stupid decision to drink and drive in February 2010.

Authorities reported that Denman left a San Antonio Chili’s restaurant after consuming too much alcohol and decided to drive herself home.  Witnesses have said that she was swerving and hit curbs, other cars, and a light pole.  Also on the way, she ended up turning the wrong direction down a one-way street.  The resulting collision killed the driver of the other car.

That other person was a mother of three teenage boys and the wife of a husband who has multiple sclerosis.  Her family said that she was the bedrock of their family; caring for her husband during the day and supporting her family by teaching music.  Piano teacher Amy Meron was driving her 14-year old son and two of his friends when Denman ran into her car.  Denman had a blood-alcohol level almost four times over the legal limit.

James Sieloff, who defended Denman, had her admit to her guilt and throw herself on the mercy of the court.  She waived her right to a trial and pleaded no contest to the charge of intoxicated manslaughter with a deadly weapon.  The problem is that no plea deal was agreed to by the prosecution, which left it up to the judge to sentence.  This allowed any sentence to be given between probation and 20 years in prison.

According to Bexar County Assistant District Attorney Charles Rich, probation, regardless of one’s educational background or level of regret, sends the wrong message to the community. Along with that, he requested a prison term in the upper end of the punishment range.  Denman must serve half her sentence before she is eligible for parole.

This shows how important it is to have a good lawyer on your side; a lawyer who has experience allowing them to review your case and find the best solution.  Please contact a Texas DWI lawyer to appraise your situation.

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