Arapahoe District Judge Natalie Chase on Wednesday put a repeat drunken driver behind bars for the maximum sentence of 15½ years.
Pedro Reynaldo Tun, 40, had four convictions for driving under the influence in Arapahoe, Jefferson and Adams counties when he was arrested by Aurora police on Oct. 31, 2015. He also had a vehicular homicide conviction in Douglas County. In that case, Tun was driving and a passenger in his car died after Tun recklessly crashed in 1995.
Tun was deported numerous times, and his drivers license had been revoked as a habitual traffic offender.
In 2015, Tun was pulled over on Sixth Avenue near Interstate 225 because the car he was driving didn’t have a license plate. When the officer interviewed Tun, he smelled alcohol and Tun said he had been drinking beer. Tun’s eyes were bloodshot, his speech was slurred and he was unable to pass roadside sobriety tests.
A blood test taken two hours later determined his blood-alcohol level was 0.260.
“This was a drunk driver whose action had already taken a life, and that didn’t wake up him to the consequences of his actions,” said Deputy District Attorney Jesse DuBois, who prosecuted the case. “This case is why we have a felony DUI law – when nothing else has worked.”
A jury deliberated only 30 minutes before finding Tun guilty of all counts, including driving under the influence with three or more prior offenses, a Class 4 felony. They also found him guilty of the misdemeanor and traffic offenses of alcohol-related driving under restraint, driving as a habitual traffic offender, and driving without insurance or registration.
Chase sentenced Tun to 12 years in prison for the DUI felony, and an additional 3½ years in jail on the lesser charges. The sentences will be served consecutively.
“Sentences like Judge Chase’s in this case are the clearest signal to our community that our criminal justice system will not tolerate those who wantonly put at risk the lives of our families and neighbors on our roads,” said District Attorney George H. Brauchler. “Repeated drunk driving convictions, a prior conviction for vehicular homicide, and numerous deportations: Pedro Tun does not care about our laws or this community. He is a menace to this community. He earned the ton of years Judge Chase imposed.”