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Driver charged with DUI manslaughter in Dunedin crash

DUNEDIN — A man who drove through a red light last month and slammed into another car, killing the driver, has been charged with DUI manslaughter, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

Adrian David Rodriguez, 33, turned himself in to authorities Friday and was booked in the Pinellas County Jail.

Rodriguez, of Clearwater, was driving south on U.S. 19 at 3 a.m. Oct. 6 in a Nissan Altima when he blew through the light at Republic Drive, authorities said.

At the same time, Christopher J. Holly, 28, who was driving north in a Nissan Xterra, was making a U-turn through a green left-turn arrow signal to head south on U.S. 19. Holly, also of Clearwater, was leaving Countryside Lanes, where he was a well-known member of a competitive bowling league.

The cars collided. The Xterra flipped over and Holly died at the scene.

Rodriguez, who suffered minor injuries in the crash, had bloodshot and watery eyes, an odor of alcohol on his breath, and was slurring his speech, according to FHP troopers.

Because the crash involved a death, authorities ordered blood to be drawn from Rodriguez for testing. Weeks later, the test results showed his blood alcohol level at the time of the crash was 0.25, according to an arrest report, more than three times the limit at which the state presumes impairment.

In addition to DUI manslaughter, Rodriguez faces a charge of DUI with property damage. His arrest report notes that he has a previous conviction for driving under the influence. He was released from jail Friday night on $20,250 bail.

Holly was a member of three different bowling teams at Countryside Lanes, which is just down the street from where the crash happened. After his death, Holly's teammates said they planned to donate some of their bowling earnings to Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

Times staff writer Danielle Paquette contributed to this report.

Driver charged with DUI manslaughter in Dunedin crash 11/24/12 [Last modified: Saturday, November 24, 2012 8:53pm]
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