District Man Sentenced to Six Years in Prison for Traffic Fatality in Northeast Washington
Driver Admitted Using PCP Prior to Striking Motorcyclist
WASHINGTON - Daryl G. Alexander, 47, of Washington, D.C., was sentenced today to six years in prison on a charge of voluntary manslaughter in a crash that killed Oren Dorell, a reporter for USA Today, in Northeast Washington, announced U.S. Attorney Jessie K. Liu and Peter Newsham, Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD). Prior to the crash, according to the evidence, Alexander had smoked a cigarette dipped in PCP.
Alexander pled guilty on Sept. 14, 2018, in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. He pled guilty under what is known as the Alford doctrine. Under an Alford plea, the defendant does not admit the allegations but agrees that the government has enough evidence to secure a conviction. The plea, which was contingent upon the Court’s approval, called for an agreed-upon sentence of 60 to 72 months in prison. The Honorable Craig Iscoe accepted the plea and sentenced the defendant accordingly. Following his prison term, Alexander will be placed on five years of supervised release. He also faces revocation of his probation for an earlier offense.
According to the government’s evidence, on Friday June 8, 2018, at approximately 8:25 p.m., Alexander was driving his Toyota Camry eastbound on H Street NE, at a high rate of speed, when he struck a motorcycle operated by Mr. Dorell. A witness reported seeing the vehicle strike and run over Mr. Dorell, and then continue east before stopping at 13th and H Streets NE. When the Metropolitan Police Department arrived on the scene, Alexander was still in the car, and several citizens were banging on the window to get his attention. About 20 people, including citizens and offices, joined together to lift the car, and Mr. Dorell was underneath it. Mr. Dorell was transported to the hospital but died early June 9, 2018, a few hours later.
Alexander was removed from the vehicle at the scene and placed in handcuffs. Officers attempted to conduct an initial interview, but Alexander was not coherent or responsive to any verbal directions. Officers noticed a strong chemical odor consistent with PCP emanating from the defendant as well as his vehicle. He was taken to a hospital for evaluation and treatment.
After he was released from the hospital, Alexander told police that on the evening of June 8, 2018, he drove to a Chinese restaurant in Southeast Washington, placed an order for food, and then consumed alcohol and smoked a cigarette dipped in PCP in his car. According to his interview with police, the next thing he remembered was being handcuffed by police at the crime scene. He denied any recollection of driving to H Street or striking a motorcycle.
Alexander was convicted in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia in 2016 for driving under the influence of alcohol. He now faces revocation of his probation for that offense.
In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Liu and Chief Newsham praised those who investigated the case for the Metropolitan Police Department, including members of the Major Crash Investigations Unit and the First District. They also expressed appreciation for those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, including Paralegal Specialist Stephanie Siegerist, former Victim/Witness Advocate Diana Lim, and Victim/Witness Advocate Yvonne Bryant. Finally, they commended the work of Assistant U.S. Attorney Edward A. O’Connell, who prosecuted the matter.