Ex Newport Beach Police officer, Katherine Ann Heinzel, was handed a nine year prison sentence after being tried and convicted of gross vehicular manslaughter for being involved in a fatal DUI crash in November of 2011.
The accident occurred on November 19, 2011, in which Heinzel, who was driving her vehicle over 90 miles per hour under the influence, rammed into the back of Davionne Kelly’s automobile. The collision resulted in Kelly’s car to repeatedly flip down a hill, resulting in her death. The car also contained two other occupants who sustained minor to sever injuries including brain trauma.
Heinzel served as a member of the police force from 1986 to 1994 where she ironically was given the task of investigating traffic accidents with a primary focus on impaired driving collisions. During the wreck Heinzel was also severely injured. She was rescued by one of the occupants of the car she hit, and went on to make a full recovery.
Heinzel extended heartfelt amends to the Kelly family during her sentencing and also made a request for a probationary period, but was subsequently denied.
Sadly, many drunk driving accidents involve fatalities. There is never any happy ending to a drunk driving story; driving under the influence can cause the offender and its victims a lifetime of physical and emotional pain