Dane Heftved, on trial for felony drunk driving after an accident that injured the president of the Orange County Chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving and three other people, had been "drinking heavily" the night of the accident, a prosecutor said Friday.
"He had been drinking heavily and was driving a car at a very high rate of speed and then rear-ended a van going 45 miles per hour," Deputy Dist. Atty., Priscilla Cloud said in her opening statement in Heftved's trial in West Orange County Superior Court in Westminster.
A blood test administered after the crash showed a .35% alcohol content in Heftved's bloodstream, Cloud said. A driver is presumed to be under the influence if such a test shows .10% or more.
Heftved's attorney, Joel W. Baruch, told the jury that his client should be convicted of no more than misdemeanor drunk driving because the injuries sustained by the victims were not serious enough to warrant a felony conviction.