State drops DUI in Holmes Beach sports car crash

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The Lamborghini crashed by Kiri Stewart rests on the south side of Manatee Avenue Dec. 29, after she accelerated and spun out of control through the intersection at Manatee Avenue and Gulf Drive in Holmes Beach. Islander Photo: Courtesy HBPD

The state dropped an impaired driving charge against a Lamborghini driver who spun out of control through an intersection in Holmes Beach and twice ran off the road.

The driver, Kiri Stewart, of Bradenton, was southbound on Gulf Drive at 1:29 a.m. Dec. 29, 2018, when she took a wide left turn at the Manatee Public Beach and proceeded to crash the Lamborghini on Manatee Avenue, according to a Holmes Beach police report.

She accelerated, swerved off and back on the road and nearly hit two vehicles before she braked, spun 180 degrees and hit the signs on the right of way, according to the report.

Neither Stewart or her passenger, Shawn Kaleta of Holmes Beach, were injured.

The 12th Circuit State Attorney Office filed a notice Aug. 21 dropping the case.

Assistant State Attorney Cynthia Pritchett wrote in a memo that the state lacked evidence to prove the charge due to the arresting officer’s failure to “switch hats” from a traffic crash to a DUI criminal investigation, rendering evidence from the scene inadmissible.

Stewart declined a blood-alcohol test.

The case was up for hearing before Stewart’s attorney, Jason Miller of the Najmy Thomas Bradenton law firm, filed a motion to suppress evidence.

The motion asked the judge to bar all evidence because police failed to properly advise Stewart of the criminal investigation and her Miranda rights.

Miller said the state attorney agreed with the motion and complimented the state for not going forward.

Stewart has since sold the vehicle, which, according to the police investigation, sustained $150,000 damage. Miller said his client learned a “tough lesson.”

“It’s a big lesson to learn — that is, you don’t drive like an idiot because people are going to think you’re drunk,” Miller said.

5 thoughts on “State drops DUI in Holmes Beach sports car crash

  1. Janet Aubry

    Miranda rights are basic. So is building code enforcement. No wonder he gets away with so much. If we had our act together neither he nor anyone else could play fast and loose with the rules smart lawyers or not. I saw the video and found it inconclusive.

    Reply
  2. Money talks everytime

    how convenient of the charges being dropped! $300K+ car driven recklessly, causing property damages, refuses breath test and walks away ‘scott-free’, wonder what govt officials kid this one was? nice work, keep using those cameras to bust poor people without current reg tags, cause that saves lives! #shameonbuyouts!

    Reply

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