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Prison Time Shortened for Man Convicted of Driving Under Influence of Marijuana

By Stephanie Montano, smontano@krcrtv.com
Published On: Mar 13 2013 07:45:25 PM CDT
REDDING, Calif. -

A Redding man who was found guilty of severely injuring four girls while driving under the influence, is getting his time in prison shortened.

The accident happened in 2008 when Paul Wells hit an oncoming car carrying four teenage girls because he dozed off at the wheel.

Prosecutors also said the accident occurred because of the high level of marijuana in his system. When he was sentenced initially, he was going to spend up to 12 years in prison. Now, new factors have come to light which have lowered the sentence to seven years.

Wells' sentencing was cut because the toxicologist who tested his blood had a history of switching blood samples by mistake, which put the credibility of Wells' test at risk.

Tiffany Mejia was one of the victims. She was coming home from school with two of her sisters and a friend when the accident happened. As a result, she lost one of her eyes and has suffered severe brain injuries.

She said she still has nightmares about the accident.

"When I woke up in the hospital, I didn't know where I was and I was bald and had no skull on the left side of my head for nine months,” said Mejia. “I had to relearn how to walk and talk I was like a three-year-old all over again.”

Mejia says that even though she is able to drive, she is very careful behind the wheel.

“I don't like driving by myself just because I have a head injury and a loss of an eye because of this I make sure someone is with me as my second eyes," Mejia said.

Shasta County’s District Attorney’s Office said there’s nothing they can do to redo the test because Paul Well’s the old blood sample has been destroyed.