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Family sues FBI after fatal DUI crash

Attorneys for the family of two men killed in a wrong-way DUI crash with an FBI agent on Interstate 95 nearly two years ago have filed a lawsuit in federal court in Miami seeking $100-million in damages from the agency and former Agent David Farrall's supervisor.

On Nov. 23, 1999, a car driven by Farrall, of Coconut Creek, collided head-on with a car driven by 23-year-old Maurice Williams. Williams and his brother, Craig Chambers, 19, both of Lauderhill, died in the crash, and Farrall suffered serious injuries.

After the crash, Farrall tested a blood alcohol level of 0.14. In Florida, a blood alcohol level of 0.08 is the threshold for impairment.

The suit filed on Nov. 2 claims that the FBI should have known that Farrall, 38, had a drinking problem, and the agency was therefore negligent for not providing counseling and treatment for him.

The suit also charges that John Raleigh, Farrall's supervisor in the Miami office of the bureau at the time and his drinking partner the night of the crash, knew Farrall was drunk when he left the Quarterdeck Seafood Bar and Neighborhood Grill in Davie but let him drive, anyway.

Initially, the Florida Highway Patrol said Williams was driving the wrong way on the interstate at the time of the crash. A month later, it concluded that it was Farrall who was driving south in the northbound lanes when he collided with Williams' vehicle in Pompano Beach.

Farrall was charged with two counts each of DUI manslaughter and vehicular homicide and was dismissed from the FBI.

His trial was interrupted in July during jury selection when prosecutors asked for a ruling from the 4th District Court of Appeal on whether two charges of driving with an unlawful blood alcohol level could be included in the trial. The ruling is pending.