PORT ARTHUR - The wait continues for the family of Francisco Chavez, a Port Arthur man who was killed in a drunk driving crash in 2012.
The Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals reversed a ruling by a Jefferson County jury in a drunk driving case after the defendant says his blood sample was illegally taken according to court records.
Port Arthur man Randy Blanchard was charged in the crash that killed Chavez back in March of 2012.
Chavez was hit head-on by Blanchard’s truck as he was riding his motorcycle down Memorial Boulevard.
Several delays in the case, including three different district attorneys, three different judges and two different lawyers eventually led to Blanchard taking a plea deal.
Blanchard pleaded guilty to criminally negligent homicide, with a punishment of 150 days in jail and ten years of community supervision.
Most recently, the appeals court says that Blanchard’s blood sample was not properly obtained the day of the crash.
Court records show an officer followed Blanchard to the hospital and asked a nurse to draw his blood.
The officer did not obtain a warrant because it was not standard practice to do so within the Port Arthur Police Department, according to court records from testimony in the case.
The appeals court says the blood sample gave prosecutors leverage in Blanchard’s eventual plea bargain, reversing and remanding the court’s previous decision.
Chavez’s family will continue to feel the anguish that Blanchard’s punishment does not fit the crime.
Chavez’s family says they will contact the district attorney for the latest in the case.
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