Matthew Cordle took his drunk driving defense into his own hands on September 3 when he announced to the world – or at least the online world – in his viral video that he had driven drunk and killed another man in the process. In his video, Cordle promised to plead guilty to his crimes and to accept his just punishment.
Cordle surprised the judge presiding when he entered a plea of not guilty, the direct opposite of what he’d promised in his confession video, at what should have been his arraignment. Bond was set at $250,000 but Cordle declined to post bail, choosing to remain in jail. He has since pleaded guilty to two criminal counts: vehicular homicide (a second degree felony) and drunk driving and his bail has been revoked.
Cordle, just 22 years old, admitted that he had been binge-drinking on the day he drove drunk, causing a fatal crash as he drove the wrong way down Interstate 670. He explained that he had no recollection of the crash, that he had blacked out either before, during or after the crash, leaving him with little to say about the details leading up to his drunk driving arrest.
While the prosecution has asserted that it will seek the maximum penalty possible under Ohio law for the crime, his criminal defense lawyers will request that he receive a reasonable DWI sentence in light of all the facts of his case, including his willingness to take responsibility for the crash. Cordle faces between two years to eight and a half years behind bars for the fatal drunk driving crash.
Source: ABC News, “Video Confessor Pleads Guilty to Fatal DUI in Ohio,” September 18, 2013