An 18-year-old man was arrested Monday in a fatal traffic crash last year in Oak Hill that killed the driver’s teenage cousin.
The Volusia County Sheriff’s Office arrested Austen Goodrich after a warrant was issued charging the teen, who was 17 at the time of the crash, with DUI causing a death.
The arrest followed the Sheriff’s Office’s investigation into the single-vehicle crash that occurred shortly before 9 p.m. July 24, 2013.
According to the Sheriff's Office, Goodrich was driving a 2005 Dodge Dakota, with three other teenage passengers on board. The truck was traveling on West Halifax Avenue when it sped over a set of railroad tracks, said deputies, who added that the posted speed limit was 35 mph. Deputies who reconstructed the crash scene determined that the truck was going about 51 mph.
Goodrich lost control of the vehicle when it hit the pavement and then over-corrected, causing the truck to skid sideways into a ditch and come to a rest on the passenger side after striking a plastic culvert, deputies said.
Goodrich and another passenger were taken to the hospital for treatment of their injuries, while the driver’s 16-year-old cousin, Cody Goodrich, was pronounced dead at the scene, officials said.
A fourth passenger, the only one wearing a seat belt, was able to crawl out a window after the truck crashed. The teen suffered minor injuries but didn’t require hospitalization, deputies said.
At the time of the crash, deputies observed several containers of alcohol in and around the vehicle, the Sheriff's Office said. Based on witness statements, Austen Goodrich had been consuming alcoholic energy drinks, Four Lokos, before the crash, the Sheriff's Office said.
The Goodriches had also picked up a case of beer at a store, but the crash occurred just a few minutes later and none of the beer had been consumed, deputies said. Some of the bottles shattered and spilled beer around the truck, while others were found unopened.
Volusia County sheriff's officials said a charge of giving alcohol to a person under 21 will be filed with the state attorney's office against Derrick Brown, the man who supplied the case of beer to the Goodriches.
At the hospital, Austen Goodrich’s blood alcohol content was measured at 0.213, more than twice the legal limit established by Florida law.
Austen Goodrich, who lives in Edgewater, was booked into the Volusia County Branch Jail in Daytona Beach on $50,000 bond.