POLK COUNTY, Fla. — The Polk County Sheriff’s Office has arrested and charged a Brandon woman for her involvement in a DUI crash.
In the first arrest of its kind in Polk County, Michelle English, 45, has been charged with culpable negligent manslaughter after deputies said she handed her car keys over to a friend she knew was drunk.
That friend ended up crashing on Interstate 4 and killed a man.
The driver in that Nov. 24 crash, 47-year-old Lucretia Bruno faces four DUI charges, including causing a death while driving under the influence.
According to authorities, the women drank at two bars before going to a Lakeland Wawa gas station where store clerks grew concerned about Bruno’s condition.
Employees called authorities who arrived and determined she could not drive and asked English to drive her home.
They said English drove off with Bruno, but once deputies could not see, she let her friend take the wheel.
Nine minutes later, she ended up driving her car onto the shoulder of I-4, striking a pickup truck and killing the man, whose identity has not been released.
“Both of these women are responsible for this senseless death,” said Polk County Sheriff’s Grady Judd. “If English had been a good friend she would have never let Bruno behind the wheel of a vehicle. Instead, nine minutes and seven miles after handing her intoxicated friend the keys to her car, a man’s life was needlessly lost.”
Authorities: Brandon woman facing charges after letting friend drive drunk