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Date of Issue: July 19, 2007

Prosecutor seeks medical records in fatal crash

The state attorney’s office has filed a subpoena requesting the medical records of a man charged in the May 13 fatal crash on the Anna Maria Island Bridge.

The subpoena, according to a motion filed in the circuit court at the Manatee County Courthouse, seeks the medical records of Gregorio Lopez-Chavarria from Blake Medical Center.

Lopez-Chavarria was behind the wheel of a 2000 Ford Expedition when it went off the bridge and plunged into Anna Maria Sound, according to the Florida Highway Patrol.

Eudiel Gonzalez-Ortiz, 21, of Wimauma, drowned in the accident. He was riding on the passenger side in the back seat.

Lopez-Chavarria, 21, and passenger Florentino Gonzalez-Doran, 35, both of Bradenton, suffered minor injuries.

Lopez-Chavarria faces charges of DUI manslaughter, DUI with property damage/personal injury and no valid driver’s license.

The subpoena, sought by assistant state attorney Lauren Berns, specifically requests Blake Medical Center records of emergency calls containing patient examination or treatment information and the results of blood alcohol tests and x-rays.

FHP reported after the accident that the blood-alcohol level of both Lopez-Chavarria and Gonzalez-Doran was tested at Blake. Lopez-Chavarria’s blood-alcohol level was .29 - the legal limit is .08. Florentino’s blood-alcohol level was .32.

Lopez-Chavarria took another test later May 13 at the Manatee County jail. That test also put his blood-alcohol level above the legal limit.

Lopez-Chavarria, according to FHP, said he was driving about 65 mph in a 50-mph zone when he lost control of the vehicle. The SUV, headed east on the bridge, spun into the westbound lane and went through the concrete guardrail. The vehicle plunged 20 feet into the water, landing upright.

A jury trial is tentatively scheduled for October.

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