San Antonio Man Sentenced to 10 Years for Death in 1993 DWI Accident

Posted By The Carlson Law Firm || 28-Sep-2011

It has been a long road to justice for the family of Jim Blihgse. Blihgse, who retired from the military, was killed eighteen years ago after he was hit head-on by a drunk driver.

The drunk driver escaped from a hospital, assumed an alias, and lived in Mexico under a year before returning to San Antonio. At the time of thefatal DWI accident he was found to have a blood alcohol level of .25 (the legal limit at the time was .1).

Blighgse’s adult children fought for years to keep the investigation going. The drunk driver was finally located with the help of a tipster who saw his picture during a news conference to commemorate the 10th anniversary of the accident and Blihgsne’s death. Investigators then took several years to prove his connection to the crash, eventually using DNA found on the envelopes used in correspondence with his probation office.

Yesterday the drunk driver was sentenced to ten years, the maximum prison time the judge could impose for involuntary manslaughter, along with a $10,000 fine. At the time of the accident, the more serious charge of intoxication manslaughter, and the accompanying penalty of up to 20 years in prison, had not yet been signed into law.

Since the truck driven by the drunk driver was found to be a deadly weapon, he will need to serve at least five years before being eligible to apply for parole. After his release it is likely he will be deported.

Source: My SA, 10-year sentence in ’93 DWI death, Criag Kapitan, 28 September 2011

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