5 charges officially filed against woman accused of deadly Charlotte County DUI crash

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Cassandra Smith, 30. (Credit: Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office)

On Monday, five charges were officially filed against the woman accused of killing a Charlotte County deputy in a DUI crash in November.

30-year-old Cassandra Smith, of Lakeville, Massachusetts, has been charged with DUI – manslaughter, vehicular homicide, two counts of DUI – damage to person/property, and refusal to submit to testing in relation to the death of 23-yer-old Deputy Christopher Taylor on Nov. 22. She initially faced six possible charges.

According to the Florida Highway Patrol, Taylor pulled over a Honda in the northbound lanes of I-75, south of US-17, around 8:45 p.m. The Honda and the CCSO vehicle were off on the paved shoulder of the road, the deputy’s lights were on, and both the deputy and the Honda driver were outside of their vehicles. Smith was driving north on I-75 when she lost control of her Jeep, crossed over three lanes and went onto the paved shoulder. She hit the deputy’s vehicle, which hit him, the driver of the Honda, and the Honda itself.

Taylor was taken to ShorePoint Health, where he later died.

Smith’s arraignment is scheduled for Jan. 3.

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