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Possible sentence is five to 99 years in prison.

A repeat drunken driver was found guilty of murder Thursday in the death of a Houston women in a fatal automobile accident last year in Clute, Texas. The sentencing phase of the trial began yesterday in the Brazoria County Courthouse.

According to “”:

Elden Lee Carter, 33, was on probation for his third drunken driving conviction May 16, 2006, when his truck slammed into a van driven by Jessica Englebrecht, 32, on the Highway 288-B overpass in Clute. Carter, who witnesses testified had been drinking at the beach with family and friends the day of the collision, faces a possible sentence of five to 99 years in prison.

I am sure today, Mr. Carter wishes he never drank and drove.

You can make that decision, “not to drink and then drive” before your actions lead you down the path that Mr. Carter followed. When Carter was drinking at the beach with his family and friends, had he any idea what may happen if he got behind the wheel of his car, he would have found alternative transportation. Taking a cab home or having one of those family members or a friend drive him home looks like a great idea today.

By the way, those family members and friends, do they have some responsibility here? Did they know that Carter had been convicted of drunk driving three previous times? Should they have taken some action that spring day last year? I wonder how many of them have thought they should have done something?

Don’t let your friends or relatives drive after drinking.

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