Michael Rubel of Boca Raton, Florida was arrested Tuesday for allegedly crashing his Lexus RX 300 into an SUV carrying a family of five. Rubel was allegedly under the influence of numerous substances, including alcohol, cocaine, and marijuana at the time of the incident. He faces two DUI charges–one for causing property damage and another for causing serious bodily harm–and an additional charge for driving with a suspended license.
Rubel is being held at Palm Beach County Jail without bail. It is unclear if he has hired an attorney.
According to the arrest report, the alleged car crash took place on November 28 at around 6 a.m. near the Palm Beach and Broward County line. Rubel, 29, was driving his Lexus north on Federal Highway when he purportedly drove onto the wrong side of the road and struck an SUV traveling south. The SUV was occupied by the Clancy family from Pennsylvania.
Two deputies from the Broward Sheriff’s Office stationed near where the alleged incident occurred heard the crash and immediately went to investigate. One of the deputies claims to have heard Rubel suggest that he was impaired by alcohol or drugs at the scene.
Emergency services took all involved parties to the hospital. One of the passengers in the SUV, 55-year-old Celeste Clancy, had serious but non life-threatening injuries. The rest of the Clancy family suffered minor injuries. An update on their condition is not currently available.
An officer who interviewed Rubel at the hospital reported that he seemed to be under the influence and his judgment was impaired. The hospital performed a blood and urine test to check whether Rubel had consumed alcohol or drugs.
According to the results, Rubel’s blood alcohol content was 0.17, which is more than twice the legal limit for driving in Florida. His urine test came back positive for traces of cocaine, methamphetamines, marijuana, and MDMA as well.
DUI car crashes are a big problem in Florida. Over the past decade, drivers with a BAC over the legal limit of 0.08 caused, on average, 30% of all traffic-related fatalities. First and second DUI offenses are considered misdemeanors in Florida, a third or subsequent DUI offense is a 3rd degree felony.