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Docs: Alleged drunk driver in crash that killed teacher said he was trying to kill himself

Larry Hallum and his wife Brenda Hallum (Photo: Brenda Hallum)
Larry Hallum and his wife Brenda Hallum (Photo: Brenda Hallum)
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Court documents have been released regarding the crash involving the drunk driver that killed a well-known Arvin High School teacher in southwest Bakersfield.

[RELATED] Man pleads not guilty to murder of long-time Arvin educator, alleged of DUI

Marque Qualls, the man driving the car that crashed into Larry Hallum, said he was trying to kill himself when the collision happened and intentionally rammed into Hallum's car.

[RELATED] Man charged for murder of Arvin educator, Larry Hallum in alleged DUI crash

The officers who responded to the scene reported that upon their arrival, Qualls was laying face down outside of his car.

[RELATED] Family and friends remember Larry Hallum

According to the documents, it was reported that Qualls had red watery eyes and slurred speech, and both officers and the Bakersfield Fire Department reported he smelled of alcohol.

He was breathing, but in and out of consciousness, and had no visible injuries aside from blood on his mouth, while Hallum was found unresponsive.

Once at Kern Medical, Qualls refused to tell the officers where he was coming from but did say he was driving home.

He said as he was driving closer to the intersection, he noticed his light changed to red, and was driving around 50 miles per hour.

Qualls continued and told officers he didn’t stop or try to avoid a collision when he saw the light change.

One officer said that Qualls told him he had the “pedal to the metal" when he entered the intersection on White Lane and Old River Road.

According to the documents, Qualls had a prior DUI conviction and was on active probation for DUI.

Qualls initially said he would not participate in a field sobriety test, but he did consent to a preliminary alcohol screening test.

It revealed that his blood alcohol content was at .184%.

Qualls was originally booked into the Kern County Jail for DUI resulting in injury, BAC above .08 percent, and assault with a deadly weapon.

However, since Hallum’s death in April as a result of his injuries, Qualls now faces charges of assault with a deadly weapon other than a firearm, gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated, and first-degree murder.

Qualls pleaded not guilty at his arraignment last week.

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His next scheduled court appearance is on June 1.

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