Drunk driver in fatal 2011 crash arrested again

cwinston@thestate.comDecember 9, 2013 

A man charged with DUI in a fatal 2011 crash that killed two children has been arrested again.

Robert Darren Craft, 39, was arrested Friday and charged with DUI, second offense.

His bond was set at $25,000 and he remained Monday afternoon in the Lexington County Detention Center.

Shortly after 2 a.m. Friday morning, according to an incident report from the Springdale Police Department, an officer on patrol heard screeching tires coming from the Circle K parking lot at 2208 Airport Boulevard. When the officer pulled into the lot, he found Craft in a vehicle in the parking lot, according to the report. When the officer approached the vehicle and asked questions, Craft responded with slurred speech and the officer could smell alcohol.

Craft failed several field sobriety tests and was unable to follow directions to conduct a blood-alcohol test with a breath test.

Craft was convicted in February 2012 for DUI following a fatal October 2011 crash on South Lake Drive that killed two children.

Haley Upchurch, 10, and Cameron Upchurch, 7, were riding home from church with their grandparents when the crash occurred.

Initially charged with felony DUI involving death, authorities later concluded that both parties were at fault. The vehicle carrying the two children and their sibling turned in front of Craft’s vehicle. Craft was sentenced to three years in prison but was released after 12 months, according to Lexington County court records, and put on three years' probation.

Springdale Police Chief Kevin Cornett said Monday evening that officers were looking to possibly upgrade the charges from Friday’s incident.

According to state courts records, Craft was convicted of a DUI, first offense, in May 2008. He paid a fine and served no jail time in that case. Cornett said it is unclear why the charge in this case is only a second-offense charge, but that officers were investigating.

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