A Felon, Beckner Was Convicted Of Fair Burglary
For the second time this week, someone has died on a Putnam County road.
This time, deputies say it was caused by a senseless DUI.
At about 2:30 a.m., Friday, March 9th, 2012, Heather Ashley Brooks, 22, perished in a car crash on Poca River Road, Putnam County Dispatch confirms.
Caleb Andrew Beckner, 24, of Red House, is charged with felony DUI Causing Brooks' Death. He is also charged with misdemeanor Aggravated DUI, jail records state. His Blood Alcohol Content was reportedly .166, twice the legal threshold for DUI-which is .08. Beckner allegedly confessed to drinking two, 24-ounce beers before Brooks got in the car.
According to a criminal complaint filed in Putnam County Magistrate Court, Beckner had red, glassy eyes, and allegedly smelled of alcohol.
Deputies report finding alcohol containers in and near his car.
Beckner also is a felon, convicted in a burglary at the Putnam County Fair.
Deputies say Beckner lost control around the bend on Poca River Road. His green Chevrolet Cavalier flipped, and Heather died instantly. According to a witness, Beckner, and Derek Herdman, the other passenger, performed CPR on Heather, but it was too late to save her life.
As is typical with DUI accidents, the suspect, Beckner, walked away uninjured. Herdman also was not injured.
After his arrest, Beckner was transported to the Western Regional Jail and Correctional Facility, in Barboursville. Officials booked and photographed him at 4:55 a.m., according to the jail's web site.
During a hearing, Putnam County Magistrate Linda J. Hunt set Beckner's bond at $50,000, jail records state.
The roadway had to be closed while EMS was on the scene and crews cleaned up the wreck. It was re-opened at about 6:00 a.m., in time for commuters to drive to work.
Brooks' name was withheld until her has not been released to the news media so that family could be notified first.
PutnamLIVE.com does not publish photos of fatal accidents out of sensitivity to the victim's family and friends.
The Putnam County Sheriff's Department is investigating the accident.
Beckner's Putnam County Magistrate Court case number is: 12F, 158, 12M, 1234.
To view Heather Brooks' Facebook page, please click here.
Harding Family Group release the following obituary for Heather Brooks:
Ms. Heather Ashley Brooks, loving daughter, sister and granddaughter, 22 of Poca went home to be with the Lord March 9, 2012.
Heather was employed by Bob Evans of South Charleston, a 2007 Graduate of Poca High School where she was very active in DECA and SADD, and attended Everest Institute in Cross Lanes.
She is survived by her mother Sherry Browning of Poca; father Donald and wife Becky Brooks of NJ; maternal grandparents Ruth and James Browning of Madison; paternal grandparents Barbara and Donald Brooks of NY; sister Kimberly Pearman of Poca; niece Karissa Renee Pearman; uncles James Browning, Jr. of KY, Paul Browning of Chapmanville and Bradley Browning of SC and aunt Vanessa Marshall of St. Albans. Heather is survived by other family, host of cousins and friends.
A tribute to the life of Heather will be 11:00 AM Tuesday March 13, 2012 at Gatens-Harding Funeral Home with her grandfather Pastor James Browning officiating. Burial will follow in Sunset Memorial Park, South Charleston. The family will receive friends 6-8 PM Monday at the funeral home.
Condolences may be sent to the family by visiting www.hardingfamilygroup.com.
Gatens-Harding Funeral Home 147 Main St. Poca is serving the Brooks family.
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