- Date of Crime: 2007-06-16
- Location of crime:
- Sex: -
- Age: 22
Joycelyn Gardiner, 22, was killed when drunk driving, illegal alien Victor Benitez ran a red light in Nashville and broadsided Gardiner’s car. Gardiner, a Texas native, student at Tennessee State University and a track star, was pronounced dead at Vanderbilt University Medical Center one hour and 15 minutes after her Pontiac Grand Prix was demolished by Benitez’s Ford Expedition. Investigators said Benitez was drunk and did not touch the brakes of his Ford Expedition before hitting Gardiner's car. Police said Benitez was driving without a license and that he didn't have paperwork verifying that he was in the United States legally. In February 2006, Benitez was arrested on three counts of car burglary and two counts of attempted theft. Nine months later, he was arrested on charges of public intoxication, disorderly conduct and resisting arrest. Convicted on the three charges, Benitez spent seven days in jail. Ironically, Gardiner, who was scheduled to graduate at the end of the summer session with a degree in criminal justice, and she planned on attending law school after graduation.
Documentation:This incident was reported by Jared Allen and Nate Rau of The City Paper On-Line in Police say TSU senior athlete killed by illegal immigrant driving drunk and WTVF Nashville in Track Star Killed By Suspected Drunk Driver