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DA: Driver in fatal crash had blood alcohol level twice the legal limit

By Stephanie Montano, smontano@krcrtv.com
Published On: Jun 11 2014 07:43:02 PM CDT
REDDING, Calif. -

The 23-year-old man accused of driving drunk, crashing into a power pole and killing one of his passengers made his first appearance in court Wednesday.

Zachary Gleason was arraigned on second degree murder and gross vehicular manslaughter charges for the death of 20-year-old Natalie Slivka. The accident happened around  8 p.m. Saturday at the intersection of Hartnell Avenue and Argyle Road.

Prosecutors said Gleason lost control of his Subaru Impreza and struck a pole while driving over 90 miles per hour. His brother's girlfriend, 20-year-old Natalie Slivka, was a passenger.

Slivka was taken to Mercy Medical Center where she died. Two other people in the car were hurt.

Today in court, prosecutors revealed Gleason’s blood alcohol content was point .19, more than twice the legal limit. The defense claimed Gleason tried to help Slivka, and didn't run away to try and escape the scene, but rather walked away to avoid seeing what happened.

They requested that Gleason's bail be lowered but that request was denied. Gleason will be back in court on June 30.