Prosecutors said he admitted to authorities that he drank “several hours” prior to the crash and smoked marijuana earlier in the day. However, investigators determined Barnes was impaired at the time of the wreck, the DA’s office said. Authorities also found 37 grams of marijuana inside the damaged Jeep.
“On this fateful day, the defendant made a series of bad decisions. He smoked marijuana, drank alcohol, and drove recklessly at high speeds, causing him to lose control of his vehicle,” deputy chief assistant DA Randall Ivey said. “Anger may have also played a factor since witnesses reported seeing the defendant argue with Ms. Acklin, then ‘burn rubber’ as he took off from a Kroger parking lot just moments before the accident.”
Barnes pleaded guilty Monday to reckless driving, driving under the influence, possession of marijuana and two counts of first-degree vehicular homicide.
“It is heartbreaking to see the pain of a grieving family, especially when this accident could have easily been avoided had the defendant exercised better judgement,” DA Shannon Wallace said. “While nothing can bring back this young woman to her family, hopefully this case will serve to remind people of the dangers associated with driving under the influence.”