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South Dakota Man Sentenced to 16 Years in Prison for Fatal Drunk-Driving Crash

Glass of dark liquor on a table next to a car key.

The Oglala Sioux Tribal Court has sentenced Porcupine, South Dakota corrections officer Tyler Makes Him First to 16 years in prison for a fatal drunk driving accident.

Information About the Fatal Drunk-Driving Crash

According to My San Antonio, Makes Him First was driving under the influence of three and a half times the legal limit of alcohol when he crashed into a car on the Pine Ridge Indian Reservation.

The crash claimed the lives of 42-year-old Waylon Red Elk Sr., his pregnant 34-year-old wife Jaylene Pretends Eagle, and their 1-year-old son.

Makes Him First Pleaded Guilty to Manslaughter

Makes Him First pleaded guilty to three counts of manslaughter in the 2017 crash. In exchange for the plea, prosecutors dropped the charge related to the death of the unborn child.

Make Him First’s prison sentence exceeds sentencing guidelines because of his background as a corrections officer.

In addition to the 16 year prison sentence, Make Him First has been ordered to pay $9,300 in restitution.

Statistics of Alcohol-Impaired Driving

  • According to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA), almost 29 people in the United States die in alcohol-impaired vehicle crashes every day (one person every 50 minutes in 2016).
  • Drunk driving crashes claim more than 10,000 lives per year.
  • In 2010, the most recent year for which cost data is available, these deaths and damages contributed to a cost of $44B per year.

Contact an Experienced Drunk Driving Accident Attorney

If you or a loved one have been injured in a car crash, contact Thomas J. Henry. Our experienced auto accident attorneys have experience handling a multitude of injury accidents, no matter how severe the crash or injury. You may be entitled to compensation for your damages if another driver acted negligently. Our firm has the experienced lawyers and financial resources that you need to achieve the real results you deserve.

Our firm has offices in Corpus ChristiSan Antonio, Austin, and Houston, serving clients across Texas and nationwide. Call us today for a free case review — attorneys are available 24/7, nights and weekends. If you cannot make it to our office, we can visit you at your home, in the hospital, or at work.






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