Carpinteria City Councilmember Joe Armendariz had a blood-alcohol level of 0.18 percent when he crashed his car off Highway 101 on December 2, the District Attorney’s Office announced Thursday afternoon.

The revelation comes as the DA announced filing charges against Armendariz, who has a previous DUI from 2006. The DA is filing a DUI charge and driving with a blood-alcohol level of .08 percent or above. Each charge comes with allegations that he was driving with a blood-alcohol level in excess of 0.15 percent and that he had a previous conviction. Armendariz also crashed his vehicle during his 2006 DUI incident.

Armendariz, according to the CHP, failed to negotiate a curve and his car struck the highway’s center divider, then crossed back over both lanes and off the highway to the right, continuing through a wire fence and off the road.

According to Joshua Lynn, Armendariz’s attorney, the councilmember suffered a neck compression fracture and spent nearly two days in the hospital. On Monday, in his first public comments since the crash, Armendariz said there “is no excuse for the decision I made last Friday night to get behind the wheel of a car after having been drinking.”

His first court appearance is scheduled for January 25.


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