Suspect in fatal Saratoga Springs crash arrested, charged with manslaughter

File photo: Pixabay/ Ashby C. Sorensen

SARATOGA SPRINGS, Utah, Nov. 25, 2021 (Gephardt Daily) — A Sandy man was arrested Wednesday and is facing multiple charges in the May 25 automobile death of a Saratoga Springs teen.

Daniel Stanislav MacBeth, 28, has been charged with:

  • Manslaughter, a second-degree felony
  • Alcohol-restricted driver, a class B misdemeanor
  • Driving with measurable controlled substance, a class B misdemeanor
  • Driving on a suspended or revoked license, a class C misdemeanor

According to a probable cause statement filed in Utah County by a Saratoga Springs police officer, the fatal two-car crash occurred on May 25 at Redwood Road and Harvest Hills Boulevard after MacBeth allegedly ran through a red light and struck a Ford Fusion driven by 16-year-old Ammon Blake. Blake was a sophomore at Westlake High School in Saratoga Springs.

When officers arrived, the teen was deceased, and it was determined by the medical examiner that the cause of death was blunt force trauma.

MacBeth was driving the Mercedes 500 that struck the youth, the statement says.

“An off-duty officer stated that he first observed the white Mercedes 500 following him westbound at 2100 North and 3600 West in Lehi, approximately two miles from the crash,” the document states. “The driver of the white Mercedes 500 was tailgating the officer so closely that he could not see the hood of the white Mercedes 500.”

At the intersection with Redwood Road, the officer and the white Mercedes 500 turned to go south on Redwood, where the posted speed is 50 miles per hour, and the Mercedes was still tailgating the officer.

“Approximately a mile prior to the crash the white Mercedes 500 abruptly changed lanes and sped past the officer’s vehicle at a high rate of speed,” the document says. “As the driver passed, the driver ‘gestured his middle finger’ towards the officer.”

The Mercedes then changed lanes and got in front of the officer and “accelerated faster at an unsafe speed,” while sticking his arm out of the window and again flipping off the officer.

The Mercedes continued speeding as it approached the intersection at Harvest Hills, according to the statement, and the traffic light for southbound traffic turned red.

“The officer observed the Ford Fusion facing northbound in the left turn lane, and the Ford Fusion started to turn left onto Harvest Hills Boulevard. The officer watched the
white Mercedes 500 crash into the Ford Fusion. The officer never saw any brake lights on the white Mercedes 500 prior to the crash,” according to the charging document.

Two other witnesses told police the Mercedes was speeding and entered the intersection after the light was red.

An investigation by the crash reconstruction team determined that the Mercedes was moving at about 94 mph at the time of the fatal collision.

MacBeth told officers “that he had been drinking alcohol earlier in the morning, and that he woke up and was driving to a job. He stated he was driving the white Mercedes 500, and the light turned yellow and ‘there’s no way I would have enough distance to stop so I step on the gas,'” according to the reporting officer. “He stated that right when he stepped on the gas, the other car started turning.”

About two and a half hours after the crash, a blood sample was taken from MacBeth, and showed he had a blood alcohol level of 0.01. The toxicology report also indicated he had recently used cocaine.

MacBeth had been convicted of impaired driving in October 2019, which resulted in his being an alcohol restricted driver, and there were active warrants for his arrest because of his failure to appear in court in other DUI cases.

On Wednesday, the reporting officer said, “I located Mr. Macbeth leaving his residence in Sandy. I followed Mr. Macbeth looking for a safe place to pull him over. We stopped at the stop light at the intersection of 1300 East 11400 South.

“When the light turned green, Mr. Macbeth accelerated at a high rate of speed. When I engaged my overhead lights my speedometer read 83 MPH. The speed limit at the section of road is 40 MPH.”

MacBeth was booked into Utah County Jail on a no-bail hold.


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