AP NEWS

Fatal W.Va. 2 DUI trial delayed again

March 22, 2019
Clinton L. Walker, 35, of Huntington, appears in Cabell Circuit Judge Paul T. Farrell's courtroom Feb. 27, 2018, for an update in a case accusing him of DUI resulting in death.

HUNTINGTON — The trial of a man set to plead guilty to killing his father and injuring another person in a 2017 drunken crash along W.Va. 2 in Lesage will again be delayed for at least another two weeks.

Clinton L. Walker, 37, of Huntington, was set to enter a guilty plea Thursday morning to DUI resulting in death, his defense attorney, Kim Carico, told The Herald-Dispatch in February. Walker’s case was instead continued without action to 9 a.m. April 4 in Cabell County Circuit Judge Paul T. Farrell’s court.

The expected guilty plea comes after Walker waived a preliminary evidence hearing in exchange for the plea deal, Carico said.

Walker was charged with DUI resulting in death and DUI causing serious bodily injury in the death of his father, Clinton Joseph Walker, and injury of family member Ashley Acord in a Feb. 14, 2017, crash that occurred in the 5800 block of W.Va. 2 near the YMCA Kennedy Center in Lesage.

The case has remained at a standstill since the crash, in which Walker was also severely injured. After being released from a hospital, Walker had been sent to William R. Sharpe Jr. Hospital for further medical care and an evaluation on his competency. He was later released and has spent months working with mental health physicians to restore his memory and work on other issues after suffering a brain injury in the crash.

Criminal complaints filed in Cabell County by the West Virginia State Police said on the night of the crash, they found a car heavily damaged after it had traveled off the road and struck a tree.

The complaints allege Walker and his father had been drinking excessively for about an hour at a Guyandotte bar before the wreck and had left to take Acord to work. Walker lost control of his vehicle and it crossed into opposing traffic, left the road and struck several guide wires before coming to rest after crashing into a tree, the complaint said.

The defendant was identified as the driver, the deceased was the front passenger and Acord, 19, was the rear passenger.

While the punishment for DUI resulting in death is now a three-to 15-year prison sentence, it is unclear what the penalty was at the time of the crash.

Reporter Courtney Hessler contributed to this report.