Drunk man runs red light, kills innocent driver in Macomb County while out on bond, prosecutors say

Officials say Demetrius Benson tried to carjack van driver after deadly crash

Demetrius Earl Benson (Michigan Department of Corrections)

WARREN, Mich. – A man who was out on bond for a previous intoxicated driving incident ran a red light while drunk and killed an innocent driver in Macomb County over the weekend, prosecutors said.

The crash happened Saturday (Jan. 21) at 8 Mile Road and Groesbeck Highway, which is right on the Warren-Detroit border.

Prosecutors said Demetrius Benson, 36, was driving west on 8 Mile Road when he ran a red light and crashed into a car that was heading south on Grosebeck.

The other driver was taken to a nearby hospital and pronounced dead, according to authorities.

“This is a tragic loss of life that could have been prevented,” Macomb County Prosecutor Peter Lucido said.

At the time, Benson was out on bond for driving while intoxicated in Wayne County, a felony with a penalty of 1-5 years behind bars.

Benson fled the crash scene and tried to steal a van from another person, officials said. During that altercation, Benson was dragged and run over by the van.

Police said Benson broke both his legs and has multiple other injuries, but he is expected to survive.

He is charged with operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated causing death, driving with a suspended license causing death, attempted carjacking, possession of a controlled substance, and operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated -- third.

The first two charges are 15-year felonies, the attempted carjacking is a five-year felony, the controlled substance charge is a four-year felony, and the driving intoxicated charge is a 1- to 5-year felony.

Benson was arraigned at 37th District Court and given a $500,000 bond, cash/surety. He must wear a GPS tether and avoid alcohol and drugs, if released.


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Derick is the Lead Digital Editor for ClickOnDetroit and has been with Local 4 News since April 2013. Derick specializes in breaking news, crime and local sports.