Las Vegas Sun

October 31, 2014

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Spearmint Rhino dancer bound over for trial in fatal DUI case

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Shauna Diane Miller

A Las Vegas dancer accused of driving under the influence in a deadly wreck in March is headed to trial.

During a preliminary hearing Thursday in Las Vegas Justice Court, Judge Suzan Baucum found enough evidence existed to bound Shauna Miller, 26, over for trial on a felony DUI charge.

Miller, who was on her way home from a shift as a dancer at the Spearmint Rhino strip club, was driving a Hummer H2 shortly after 7 a.m. March 23 when the vehicle collided with a Ford Escort near West Spring Mountain and South Wynn roads. The Escort driver, James Joseph White, 33, died. His 2-year-old son was in the backseat and sustained bruises and a skull fracture.

White was less than two blocks from his home when the accident occurred, records indicate.

Witnesses Thursday offered different accounts as to whether Miller ran a red light the morning of the accident.

According to a Metro Police report, Miller had told investigating officers the light switched from green to yellow while she was driving west on Spring Mountain and that when she saw the Escort turn right from Wynn on to Spring Mountain, she tried to brake.

Miller also told police she’d had two beers hours during her work shift. She’d also said she had taken a Xanax around 8 the previous night.

But prosecutors maintain Miller's blood alcohol level was more than two times the legal limit and her marijuana level was more than five times the limit.

The emotional preliminary hearing was packed with family from both sides. White’s sister made red ribbons with crosses for family and friends to wear. She modeled the ribbons after ones used by Mothers Against Drunk Driving.

Miller appeared distraught throughout, her eyes teary.

The judge denied a motion to adjust Miller’s bail, which is set at $200,000. Miller’s attorney argued that Miller was a taxpayer, didn’t have a record, has family she’s helped raise and a fiancé waiting for her and that she wants to challenge the case. Baucum said because of the severity of the charges, the set bail was fair.

Miller’s arraignment is scheduled June 24 in Clark County District Court, at which point a trial date will be set.

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  1. Sad situation for all involved, and yet: Her job and her place of employment is irrelevant.