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Windbigler, Seal, could be charged relating to 19-year old Sean Jordan's death

The Alcohol Beverage Control’s (ABC) TRACE unit is recommending that the San Diego County District Attorney’s office charge two adults for allowing a 19-year old Fallbrook man to consume alcohol at their residences before he was fatally injured in a single-car accident on State Route 76.

In December 2008, Sean Walker Jordan attended a few house parties one night and was killed when he lost control of his Toyota Tacoma on SR76 near Sweetgrass Lane in Bonsall.

Prior to the collision, witnesses said they observed Jordan weaving side-to-side in the roadway and traveling at speeds varying between 15 and 45 mph. It was later confirmed that Jordan had been drinking at the two house parties he had attended.

Sheri Lee Windbigler, 45, and Shane Seal, 21, both of Fallbrook, could be charged with selling or giving alcohol to a minor. In addition to that misdemeanor, TRACE – which investigates incidents involving minors and alcohol – is recommending that both be charged under San Diego County’s Social Host Ordinance.

The TRACE unit, which stands for Target Responsibility For Alcohol Connected Emergencies, filed the paperwork with the DA’s office, charging Windbigler and Seal with violating the social host ordinance law, as well as “buying and providing” alcohol.

“This statute is typically reserved for store clerks or someone who purchases alcohol for minors at a store,” said Gerry Ackley, of TRACE. “But this ordinance is also inclusive of those who cause the furnishing of the alcohol.”

Windbigler and Seal could face up to a year in prison and a $1,015 fine. However, in cases when the person furnishing the alcohol has no prior record, it is typical to see the individual only pay the fine and be paroled instead of facing prison time.

Ackley said Section C of the social host ordinance, which requires a mandatory six month prison sentence along with the fine, because they provided the alcohol that led to injury or death, would be added to the charges to ensure the guilty parties are held accountable for their actions.

“This isn’t something that they deal off,” said Ackley.

Due to the extensive work required in the Jordan case, it was barely finished within the time frame of the statute of limitations. “A lot of man hours were spent developing relationships with the witnesses,” said Ackley. “When something like this happens, there is someone who takes the responsibility. I’m glad it all came together.”

At the conclusion of the TRACE units’ investigation, Windbigler and Seal were found to be the most responsible for allowing Jordan to drink, Ackley said.

According to Ackley, it was well known that Windbigler had a rule in her home: “I don’t care if you drink here, but anyone who does drink has to spend the night.”

“[Windbigler] wasn’t able to exert the rule,” said Ackley. “It was probably horrifying for all those who were involved, but this was an example of how inherently dangerous it is to give alcohol to someone who is underage.”

“We see house parties like this across the county,” continued Ackley. “It seems fine until the ‘rules’ are broken.”

The District Attorney’s Office is currently reviewing the case.

If Windbigler and Seal are charged, this would be the third time the county’s social host ordinance has been used to prosecute party hosts since the law was passed in 2003. The first two cases were filed last month.

“Cases like these are the reason TRACE exists. Before, cases involving minors and alcohol would slip through the cracks,” said Ackley. “I think the families deserve answers and an explanation for why this all happened.”

 

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