Drunk Driver Sentenced For Hitting & Killing Cyclist - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Drunk Driver Sentenced For Hitting & Killing Cyclist

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An unemployed drifter with a history of drunken driving convictions was sentenced today to 11 years in prison for an alcohol-related hit-and-run crash that killed a bicyclist in Alpine.

Travis Chris Weber, 44, pleaded guilty May 26 to gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and admitted an allegation of hit-and-run causing death.

The 5 p.m. collision in the bicycle lane on eastbound Alpine Boulevard last Dec. 2 killed Edward Costa, a 30-year-old self-employed construction worker and father of two.

Weber was taken into custody two days later.

California Highway Patrol Officer Michael Edwards testified during a Jan. 21 preliminary hearing that when he searched a silver Ford F-150 belonging to the defendant, he found three empty half-pint bottles of vodka in the cab and seven empty beer cans in the bed of the vehicle.

Edwards said he questioned Weber the night he was arrested outside the Liars' Club Tavern and Grill in Alpine. The defendant told him he had been on a drinking binge for five days and woke up in Campo hours after the collision and had no idea how he got there, the officer said.

After his arrest, Weber had a blood-alcohol level of .19 percent, more than twice the legal limit of .08 percent, authorities said.

San Diego County sheriff's Sgt. Joseph Sprecco testified that people who attended a memorial gathering at the crash site spotted the pickup truck in the parking lot across the street.

CHP Officer Sid Turner said green paint from the the victim's mountain bike was found on a bumper of the truck, and debris found at the scene -- specifically a broken headlight --  matched what remained on the truck.

A woman testified that Weber rear-ended her about 20 minutes before the fatal crash, and that he became angry and screamed at her while they were exchanging information.

Edwards said a witness told him he saw Weber drive away quickly from the fender-bender. The witness said the pickup went into the opposing traffic lanes and then over-corrected to the embankment.

Weber had previous DUI convictions in New York and San Diego, said Deputy District Attorney Gordon Davis.

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