Drunk, stoned driver pleads guilty to vehicular homicide

TACOMA, Wash. -- A man who police say was drunk and stoned when he crashed his car in Purdy in March, killing his 9-year-old nephew, pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide Tuesday.

Jayce Randall, 26, had four drinks and smoked marijuana at a family barbecue in the hour before the crash. He offered to drive his nephew Donovan Best and his 8-year-old niece to their grandparents' home around 1 a.m. as a favor. The niece told investigators as Randall was driving west on SR-16, he asked if they "were ready," which she says Randall usually would say before speeding. Prosecutors said Randall then sped up as he exited onto Purdy Drive NW.

Donovan was rushed to Mary Bridge Children's Hospital where he later died from his injuries. Troopers said they found over 120 grams of marijuana outside the car and a breath test found Randall's blood-alcohol level to be 0.194 -- more than double the legal limit.

When sentenced on Oct. 4, Randall faces a sentencing range of 6 1/2 years to 8 1/2 years -- a range that has more than doubled in the aftermath of legislative efforts in 2012 to stiffen penalties for vehicular homicide.