• January 25, 2023

Jose Marrero, Desiree Seanez Killed in Possible DWI Accident in Chaparral, NM

Chaparral, NM -- January 18, 2023, Jose Marrero and Desiree Seanez were killed as the result of a possible drunk driver accident.

According to diligent reporting from KTSM, the crash happened at around 5:25 p.m. along Highway 213 in the Chaparral area. They say that three vehicles collided on the highway, and that led to the deaths of 20-year-old Jose Marrero and 20-year-old Desiree Seanez. It's unclear if others were hurt.

Jose Marrero, Desiree Seanez Killed in Possible DWI Accident in Chaparral, NM

The driver of the vehicle that seems to have caused that crash left the scene on foot. Sources say that authorities identified that driver as James Patrick Woods of El Paso. He was arrested for Homicide by Vehicle, Failure to Render Aid, Resisting and Evading Arrest, Immediate Notice of an Accident, and Open Container.

Without a doubt, if these allegations prove to be true, these are serious mistakes that warrant appropriate consequences. But I've received many questions over the years from concerned victims and families about crashes in New Mexico, Arkansas, Oklahoma, and even Mexico. When something happens so close to state lines, things become less clear in terms of whose laws apply to a given crash.

While generally it's the laws of the location of the accident, some situations can muddy the waters. For example, a deadly drunk driving crash in Arkansas can involve an alcohol provider in Texas liable under the latter state's dram shop laws rather than where the crash itself happened.

I wouldn't be able to say how all of that would apply here without knowing more about what all led up to the crash. My point is simply to emphasize to people that this isn't just about seeing someone in cuffs. They'll have their day in court. Meanwhile, there are still grieving families who deserves answers.

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