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City Of Riverside Wants Convicted Drunk Driver To Pay For Emergency Response To Wreck

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RIVERSIDE (CBSLA.com) —The city of Riverside wants a drunk driver to pay the emergency costs for a wreck that killed the man’s friend.

On June 9, 2012, 19-year-old Jacob Felix was intoxicated when he crashed his SUV on Arlington Road, near Fairhaven Drive.

Felix’s passenger, 20-year-old Jonathan Cuevas, died in the collision.

Felix pleaded guilty to gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and was sentenced to a year behind bars and five years’ probation.

He was released from custody in late April 2013.

Recently, the Riverside city attorney sued Felix, saying he owes the city more than $10,000 for the emergency response to the accident.

Robert Nash Park, a professor at the Presley Center for Crime and Justice Studies at UC Riverside, said state and federal laws allow municipalities to go after convicted felons in cases like Felix’s.

“Governments have increasingly turned to creating statutes that will allow them to recover the enormous or sometimes… enormous costs of these rescue operations,” he said.

CBS2’s Tom Wait was unable to reach Felix for comment.

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