Man gets 6 months in jail for DUI-marijuana crash that killed pe - KPTV - FOX 12

Man gets 6 months in jail for DUI-marijuana crash that killed pedestrian

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Scotty Rowles in court Tuesday Scotty Rowles in court Tuesday
Scotty Rowles in court Tuesday Scotty Rowles in court Tuesday
Scene of deadly collision in Vancouver, December 2012 file image Scene of deadly collision in Vancouver, December 2012 file image
VANCOUVER, WA (KPTV) -

A man who police said failed a field sobriety test and admitted smoking marijuana before a crash that killed a pedestrian in Vancouver was sentenced to six months in jail.

Scotty Rowles, 49, pleaded guilty to the misdemeanor charge of DUI on May 1. He was sentenced in court Tuesday morning.

Rowles was first arrested after the collision that killed 62-year-old Donald Collins on Dec. 17, 2012 near East Mill Plain Boulevard and Andresen Road.

Investigators said Collins was close to two different lit and controlled intersections, but stepped out in the middle of traffic to try and cross the road and was hit by a 1995 Ford pickup driven by Rowles.

The officer interviewing Rowles said he smelled a faint odor of marijuana on his breath, and Rowles admitted to smoking pot between one and one-and-half-hours prior to the crash, according to a probable cause affidavit.

Rowles said he only "smoked a little bowl, so he did not feel impaired," court documents state.

Prosecutors initially dismissed the charges against Rowles, citing a lack of evidence. However, after receiving toxicology results, he was charged with vehicular homicide in January 2014.

Prosecutors said Washington law dictates that the driver is at fault for any crash if they are under the influence of intoxicants.

Court documents said the toxicology report showed the THC in Rowles' blood measured 7.2 nanograms per milliliter, above the legal limit set in November 2012 in Washington of 5 ng/ML.

Collins lived about a mile from where he was killed. Police said at the time this was the first deadly crash involving marijuana since it was legalized in Washington.

In court Tuesday, Rowles, sobbing, turned and apologized to family members of Collins, saying he never intended to hurt anyone.

"It's just a tragic accident and what hurts the most is that I did slam on the brakes," he said. "I couldn't stop in time to miss your loved one."

The judge sentenced Rowles to six months in jail and five years probation once he's released.

"If you had not partaken in the marijuana, pot, and driven, would the outcome have been different?" the judge said. "It may not have been. It may have been. We'll never know for certain."

Collins' sister said the family does not believe the punishment fits the crime.

"I think it was too lenient," Pat Crumpacker said, "because my brother died."

She also addressed Rowles' apology in court.

"Yes, he definitely felt remorse, but I'm not sure for what, maybe it's that 180 days," she said.

Rowles was also ordered to pay restitution to the victim's family, with an amount to be determined at a later date.

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