Driver in fatal Lehigh Acres 2019 crash guilty of DUI-manslaughter, gets 10 years in prison

Andy Gonzalez, 25, was sentenced Friday in Lee County Court. He had been…

Florida Highway Patrol plans ‘wolfpack’ DUI detail Thursday-Friday on Lee, Collier roads
Driver in fatal Lehigh Acres 2019 crash guilty of DUI-manslaughter, gets 10 years in prison 1

Michael Braun
 
| Fort Myers News-Press

A Lehigh Acres man involved in a December 2019 crash that took the life of his female passenger will spend the next 10-plus years behind prison bars.

Andy Enrique Gonzalez, 25, pleaded no contest to DUI manslaughter and was adjudicated guilty Friday and sentenced Wednesday before Judge Bruce E. Kyle in Lee County Court.

Gonzalez was the driver of a van that crashed Dec. 18, splitting in pieces and killing passenger Roxana Castro, 23. He had been charged with manslaughter-driving under the influence in that crash.

More: Woman killed in crash on Lee Boulevard in Lehigh Acres; 95th fatality in Lee County this year

Gonzalez was driving a 2013 Honda CRV east on Lee Boulevard at a high rate of speed when he drove off the road and hit two trees, a Florida Highway Patrol report said.

As part of his sentence, Gonzalez will spend 124.5 months in a state prison, followed by 36 months of probation and be prohibited for life from having a driver’s license.

More: Daughters of victim in 2017 fatal crash say latest Lehigh Acres fatality needn’t have happened

More: Driver in Wednesday’s fatal crash in Lehigh faced vehicular homicide charges in 2017 crash

Gonzalez had previously been charged with vehicular homicide and reckless driving with damage in a 2017 crash that took the life of Ernest Wayne Peterson, 82.

In the previous incident, Gonzalez, again with Castro as a passenger, was traveling along a Lehigh Acres roadway on April 30, 2017, when their 2004 Saturn smashed into the driver’s side of a 2003 Nissan Altima driven by Peterson.

During the 2017 crash investigation, an examination of the electronic data recorder from the Saturn SUV found that Gonzalez was driving 88 mph to impact. The speed limit at the crash scene at Leeland Heights Boulevard and Maple Avenue South is 45 mph.

Peterson was severely injured and died 15 days later at Lee Memorial Hospital in Fort Myers.

Skid marks at the crash scene first thought to be from the 2017 crash were later determined to be from a previous crash. The Gonzalez vehicle’s electronic data recorder information showed that the SUV’s brakes had not been applied before impact, the report said.

Gonzalez was found not guilty of the vehicular homicide charge and the reckless driving charge was dropped. He was later found guilty of failure to obey a traffic control device.

In the December 2019 crash, Castro was belted in her seat but separated from the car when the vehicle split into several pieces by the force of the crash, troopers said. She died at the scene.

Gonzalez’ blood alcohol level in the 2019 crash was reported by the FHP as 0.180. In Florida it is illegal to drive with a .08% blood alcohol content or higher if you are older than 21.

Connect with breaking news reporter Michael Braun: MichaelBraunNP (Facebook)@MichaelBraunNP (Twitter) or mbraun@news-press.com.

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Driver in fatal Lehigh Acres 2019 crash guilty of DUI-manslaughter, gets 10 years in prison 2

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