Navajo Man from Arizona Pleads Guilty to Federal Involuntary Manslaughter Charge in New Mexico
ALBUQUERQUE – Jerome Dayzie, 44, an enrolled member of the Navajo Nation who resides in Roundrock, Ariz., pled guilty today in federal court in Albuquerque, N.M., to an involuntary manslaughter charge.
Dayzie was arrested in Dec. 2017, on a criminal complaint charging him with killing a man on Dec. 9, 2017, on the Navajo Indian Reservation in San Juan County, N.M. According to the complaint, Dayzie killed the victim when he hit a trailer parked on the side of the road and flipped the vehicle he was driving and in which the victim was a passenger. At the time of the crash, Dayzie was driving under the influence of alcohol.
During today’s proceedings, Dayzie pled guilty to a felony information charging him with involuntary manslaughter. In entering the guilty plea, Dayzie admitted killing the victim when he crashed the vehicle he was driving into a trailer parked on the side of the road, flipping the vehicle and causing the victim, who was a passenger, to be ejected. Dayzie admitted killing the victim while driving recklessly and under the influence of alcohol, and that the alcohol rendered him incapable of exercising clear judgment and a steady hand in operating the vehicle.
At sentencing, Dayzie faces a maximum statutory penalty of eight years in federal prison. A sentencing hearing has yet to be scheduled.
This case was investigated by the Farmington office of the FBI and the Navajo Nation Department of Public Safety. Assistant U.S. Attorney Raquel Ruiz-Velez is prosecuting the case.