Drunk Driver Severely Injures Two in Head-On Collision; 6 Years, 12 Months to Serve; Commonwealth v. Carl Jordan Hylton

Tuesday, August 21, 2018

Colin D. Stolle, Commonwealth's Attorney for the city of Virginia Beach, announced that Carl Jordan Hylton, 38 years old, formerly of the 200 block of West 30th Street in Norfolk, Virginia, was sentenced today by Circuit Court Judge H. Thomas Padrick for DUI – Victim Permanently Impaired (2 counts) and DUI.  Judge Padrick sentenced Hylton to ten (10) years and twelve (12) months, with four (4) years suspended, leaving six (6) years and twelve (12) months to serve. This sentence was significantly higher than the Virginia State Sentencing Guidelines' recommendation, which called for a sentence no greater than two (2) years and ten (10) months. 

Hylton pled guilty on April 24, 2018. Had this matter gone to trial, the Commonwealth's evidence would have proven that on the evening of September 10, 2017, four young women were on their way home after a night of celebrating one of their birthdays.  As they traveled in an SUV westbound on Greenwich Road in Virginia Beach, Hylton was driving east bound.  He entered the first curve in the roadway, crossed over the solid double yellow lines, and struck, head-on, the SUV carrying the four ladies.  A back seat passenger was unconscious and the "Jaws of Life" had to be used to cut her out of the SUV.  Another backseat passenger sustained a broken hip and fractured cheek bone.  The front seat passenger had the dashboard shoved onto her legs but was not significantly injured.  The driver was injured from the airbags and also had to be cut from the vehicle using the "Jaws of Life." 

When police and rescue arrived at the scene, Hylton was in the front seat of his car not wearing a seatbelt.  He had a strong odor of alcohol on his breath and an open container of beer in the center console. He was transported to the hospital for injuries to his arm and foot.  He told police that he had "a little bit of alcohol," felt "a little bit intoxicated," and was coming from the beach.  Hospital records show that the blood/alcohol level was .12.

During a search of Hylton's car, the police located an open 12 oz. Bud Light bottle, an open 24 oz. Icehouse Edge beer can, and another open 24 oz. Icehouse Edge beer can in the center console. Behind the driver's seat they found an open bottle of Hennessy Cognac.  They also found three Norfolk library books, one of which was entitled "Making Great Decisions".

The backseat passenger who was unconscious after the crash was transported to Sentara Virginia Beach General Hospital by LIFENET and remained in a coma for eleven (11) days.  She was diagnosed with a closed head injury, severe traumatic brain injury, and diffuse axonal injury.  After waking from the coma, she was admitted to the Shepherd Center in Atlanta, Georgia, for rehabilitation, as there were no local facilities that could adequately address her significant brain injuries.  She remained in the Shepherd Center from September 27, 2017 to November 8, 2017.  She has lived with her parents since her discharge from the rehabilitation hospital and continues to require 24-hour-a-day supervision.

The backseat passenger who sustained a broken hip underwent surgery and has a metal rod inserted into her hip.  She was in the hospital for five (5) days, used a walker for six (6) weeks, and has permanent scarring. 

Hylton has prior convictions for Possession with Intent to Distribute Marijuana, Petit Larceny, Reckless Driving, nine (9) counts of Driving on a Revoked License, and two (2) counts of Driving without a License. 

Assistant Commonwealth's Attorneys Janeé D. Joslin and Emily A. Woodley prosecuted this case. Please contact Macie Allen if additional information is desired