10 years probation in fatal drunken driving crash

Defendant Jacob Perez offers personal apology

Author: Paul Venema, Reporter, pvenema@ksat.com
Published On: May 03 2012 05:34:57 PM CDT   Updated On: May 03 2012 06:13:44 PM CDT

Just minutes before he was to testify in the punishment phase of his trial on intoxication manslaughter and intoxication assault charges, the defendant, Jacob Perez, 24, was approached by the family of the man killed in the wreck.

“They approached me and said they forgave me. We hugged and cried together and I told them that I was truly sorry,” Perez testified.

Perez’ blood alcohol level was .19 on the night of July 12, 2010, when his truck slammed head-on into a car in which Juan Urrutia, 38, was a passenger.

Perez was going the wrong way on Highway 90.

Urrutia was killed.

The driver of the car he was riding and three occupants of a car that Perez’s truck also hit were seriously injured.

The jury deliberated for over three hours on Thursday before returning their verdict.

They gave Perez 10 years probation on the intoxication manslaughter charge and three years probation on each intoxication assault charge.

Judge Raymond Angelini ordered that Perez be taken into custody pending a pre-sentencing investigation. 

He will be formally sentenced on June 4.