D.C. Man Pleads Guilty to Involuntary Manslaughter in 2002 Traffic Death

August 17, 2005

United States Attorney Kenneth Wainstein announced that Darryl Lamont Barnes, 27, formerly of the 6000 block of 8th Street, NW, entered a plea of guilty to a charge of Involuntary Manslaughter for the Feb. 19, 2002, death of Ray Berry Alexander, 53, formerly of Mitchellville, Md.

Barnes faces a maximum sentence of up to 30 years in prison when he is sentenced by D.C. Superior Court Judge Robert Richter on Oct. 13, 2005. Under the voluntary Superior Court guidelines, the defendant faces a sentence of between five and 10 years in prison.

According to the government’s evidence, on Feb. 19, 2002, at approximately 10:49 p.m., members of the Metropolitan Police Department received a radio run for a traffic accident in the outbound/eastbound lanes of the 4000 block of New York Avenue, NE. Upon arrival, police observed a multi-car accident scene.

Among the damaged vehicles were a 1982 Suburu XT operated by Ray Alexander, the decedent, which had been struck in a head-on collision, and a 1994 Cadillac Seville, which had come to a rest against the left-hand side jersey barrier and which also showed signs of a front-end collision. There were no occupants in the Cadillac. The defendant, Barnes, was being restrained by numerous motorists on the other side of New York Avenue, NE. The decedent was in the driver’s seat of the Suburu, suffering from massive head trauma. He was transported to the Washington Hospital Center’s MedStar Shock Trauma Unit, where he was pronounced dead at 11:42 p.m.

Subsequent investigation reportedly determined that the defendant had been operating the Cadillac while traveling westbound in the eastbound lanes of New York Avenue, into oncoming traffic, at a high rate of speed. When the Cadillac entered the 4000 block of New York Avenue, NE, it struck, head on, the decedent’s Suburu. The defendant’s Cadillac did not brake, slow, or swerve before the impact. The Cadillac then collided with two additional vehicles in the eastbound lanes and finally came to a rest against the left-hand side jersey barrier separating the eastbound and westbound lanes.

After the collision, the defendant reportedly climbed out of the driver’s side of the Cadillac and attempted to flee the scene on foot. He was apprehended, detained, and transported from New York Avenue to the Washington Hospital Center, where he was treated and then released.

Subsequently-obtained medical records reportedly showed that the defendant had been operating the Cadillac under the influence of PCP and marijuana when he drove the wrong way into one-way traffic and collided with the decedent.

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