It’s been 48 hours since news broke of the spectacular car crash that took the lives of 34-year-old Jackass star Ryan Dunn and his passenger, Zachary Hartwell, 30. In that time, Roger Ebert has semi-apologized for his knee-jerk tweet blaming Dunn's friends for allowing Dunn to take the wheel of his Porsche just minutes after posting photos, on Twitter, of himself drinking at a local bar. Now test results prove Ebert may have had a point.
The West Goshen, Penn. police department has confirmed that Dunn’s blood alcohol concentration was 0.196 percent, or twice the legal state limit of 0.08, at the time of the accident. Meanwhile, police are putting Dunn’s estimated driving speed at somewhere between a mind-boggling 132 and 150 miles per hour, based on physical evidence from the scene. Talk about a lethal combination.
This certainly wasn’t Dunn’s first flirtation with driving dangerously. Bam Margera’s mom was widely quoted as saying she had often “yelled at him” to slow down, and the Philadelphia Inquirer reports that Dunn had earned 23 citations over the past 13 years, including 10 stops for speeding and careless driving. Dunn pleaded guilty to almost all of them, including a DUI in 2005 that resulted in the suspension of his license for one year.
It’s a tragic story made all the more tragic by the fact that it could have easily been avoided without such reckless behavior.