Pensacola woman sentenced for 2019 fatal DUI crash after Mardi Gras parade

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PENSACOLA, Fla. (WKRG) — A Pensacola woman was sentenced to 13 years and seven months for a fatal DUI hit and run that happened in March 2019, after a Mardi Gras parade.

Cherri Lee Baker of Pensacola was sentenced to serve 13 years and 7 months in prison for DUI Manslaughter, DUI Causing Injury, Leaving the Scene of a Crash Involving Death and Leaving the Scene of a Crash Involving Injury. Circuit Court Judge Jan Shackelford imposed the sentence on Sept. 10.

After leaving the Mardi Gras parade, Baker was driving her 2017 Nissan Rogue eastbound on Cervantes when she attempted to merge into the outside lane from the inside lane to avoid another vehicle that stopped was stopped waiting to turn onto 19th Avenue, according to the State Attorney’s office.

At that time, Baker’s car came in contact with the back of a Honda Accord in the outside lane causing it to lose control and crash into the opposite lanes. A 2004 Dodge Dakota going westbound couldn’t avoid the collision and crashed into the passenger side of the Accord. The passenger in the Accord passed away and the driver was injured.

Prosecutors say Baker’s Rogue crashed into the Dakota and left the scene. Police later found her. A sample of her blood showed Baker had a .184 blood-alcohol content which is over twice the legal limit in Florida.

Baker had been previously convicted of DUI in 2013.

The offense was investigated by the Pensacola Police Department. The case was prosecuted by Assistant State Attorney Matt Gordon.

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