Darious Andrews, the Greenwood teen charged in the death of 21-year-old Alisha Boyter and her unborn child, was indicted on additional charges this week by a Greenwood County grand jury.
Andrews was indicted on two counts of reckless homicide in connection with the Sep. 28 deaths of Boyter and her unborn child. Andrews is already facing two counts of felony DUI resulting in death in connection with the incident.
Andrews appeared in court last week for a bond reduction hearing. Andrews’ bond was set at $150,000 cash or surety by a Greenwood County magistrate judge the day following the incident. During the hearing, prosecutors revealed Andrews had a blood-alcohol content of 0.0 immediately following the incident, though Andrews admitted to law enforcement officials he had been drinking alcohol earlier in the day. Andrews also told law enforcement officials he had smoked marijuana sometime the day of the incident, but did not disclose when during the day he smoked the marijuana.
A blood toxicology test performed by the State law Enforcement Division indicated there was marijuana in Andrews’ system, Eighth Circuit Solicitor David Stumbo told the court during the hearing. Stumbo told the court he would need to speak further with the SLED toxicologist to better understand what the toxicology results meant since he was unfamiliar with DUI cases where only marijuana was involved. Circuit Court Judge Frank Addy took the matter under advisement, stating he also needed additional information on DUI cases involving only marijuana. A decision on the matter is expected next week.
Section 56-5-2945 (A) of the S.C. Code of Laws states, in part, that “a person who, while under the influence of alcohol, drugs, or the combination of alcohol and drugs, drives a motor vehicle and when driving a motor vehicle does any act forbidden by law or neglects any duty imposed by law in the driving of the motor vehicle, which act or neglect proximately causes great bodily injury or death to a person other than himself, is guilty of the offense of felony driving under the influence.” The code of laws does not limit felony DUI to only alcohol; it provides for the charge to be applied when a person is under the influence of drugs, alcohol or a combination of the two.
Stumbo informed the court he would be seeking the two additional indictments for reckless homicide against Andrews during the hearing. Reckless homicide is not a lesser included offense of felony DUI. A jury can acquit a defendant of a particular charge, yet find them guilty of a lesser included offense. In Andrews’ case, a jury could not acquit him of the felony DUI and convict him of reckless homicide unless there are indictments.
According to Andrews’ indictments for felony DUI, he was travelling approximately 15 mph over the posted speed limit when his vehicle struck Boyter’s vehicle. Multiple eye witnesses also say Andrews ran through a red traffic light immediately before striking Boyter’s vehicle. The indictments for reckless homicide state Andrews was “driving and operating a motor vehicle in a reckless disregard for the safety of others” and “willfully and unlawfully caused said vehicle to collide with another vehicle” causing the death of Boyter and her unborn child.