Drunk, swerving West St. Paul driver has 5 months to serve for killing passenger

  • Article by: PAUL WALSH , Star Tribune
  • Updated: August 14, 2014 - 9:04 PM

A 22-year-old driver who left a weekend drinking party in an SUV packed with passengers, then killed one of them in a crash while speeding and swerving down a West St. Paul street, has slightly more than five months remaining on his sentence.

Jon D. Devereaux, of West St. Paul, was sentenced Wednesday in Dakota County District Court to 365 days in jail, receiving credit for 200 days already served.

The Nov. 14 crash into a front-yard fence killed passenger Robert Espinoza-Blaeser, 21, of West St. Paul, and injured others with him.

Devereaux pleaded guilty in June to one count of criminal vehicular homicide and six counts of criminal vehicular operation.

Along with the 165 days in jail yet to serve, Devereaux has a long list of conditions to abide by upon his release. Violation of any of them could mean imposition of a stayed prison term of five years and one month. Those conditions include paying restitution to his victims, participating in a victim impact panel, staying away from alcohol and illicit drugs, and performing 40 hours of community service for each year of his 10 years on probation.

Devereaux and his passengers had been drinking at a friend’s house. They left the party in an SUV, with Devereaux soon driving more than 60 miles per hour down Bernard Avenue. He ran a red light at Robert Street before rolling the steering wheel back and forth, flipping the vehicle. Espinoza-Blaeser and others were thrown from the SUV.

A blood sample taken from Devereaux about four hours later showed that he had a blood-alcohol concentration of 0.12 percent, well above the 0.08 legal limit for driving in Minnesota.

 

Paul Walsh • 612-673-4482

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