Drunk driver gets four years in fatal crash

Canadian County jury finds defendant guilty of first-degree manslaughter

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Chance Dwayne Girten

By Conrad Dudderar
Staff Writer

EL RENO – A Clayton, Okla. man has been sentenced to four years in prison after a Canadian County jury found him guilty of causing a fatal drunk-driving crash southeast of El Reno.

Chance Dwayne Girten, 25, was convicted of first-degree manslaughter in the death of Bryan Flores, 34, stemming from a single-vehicle traffic collision in November 2018 on Cedar Road near S.W. 15th.

Having found the defendant guilty, the jury recently recommended he serve a four-year sentence in Oklahoma Department of Corrections’ custody.

At a March 29th hearing, Canadian County District Judge Jack D. McCurdy II heard statements from the victim’s family before sentencing Girten to the four years in prison.

McCurdy ordered Girten to pay a $5,000 victim’s compensation assessment and related court costs.

Girten appeared at the sentencing hearing with his attorneys, Zack Simmons and Dan Pond. Assistant district attorneys Micheal Oglesby and Austin Murrey represented the prosecution.

The defendant waived his appeal rights. He will be transferred from the Canadian County Jail to a state prison to serve his time.

Girten, of Pushmataha County, was charged Jan. 18, 2019, in Canadian County District Court. The trial had been continued several times.

Victim Flores was a passenger in a 2012 Dodge Ram pickup driven by Girten, then 22, after they left Lyanna’s Lakeside Bar & Grill in Hinton.

Flores, of Kellyville in Creek County, died at the scene from head and neck injuries sustained in the crash.

100 MILES PER HOUR

Oklahoma Highway Patrol trooper Matthew Conway investigated the deadly wreck that occurred about 12:20 a.m. Nov. 10, 2018, near El Reno.

“Girten, while traveling northbound on Cedar Road (from Lyanna’s Lakeside), failed to negotiate the left-hand curve,” according to Conway’s probable cause affidavit. “Girten departed the roadway right striking multiple trees and a fence before coming to rest below the curve in the roadway in an agricultural field.”

During the investigation, trooper Conway learned Girten’s 2012 Dodge Ram pickup was traveling about 100 miles per hour when the collision occurred.

The OHP investigator also learned that Girten, Flores and coworkers after dinner had traveled to Lyanna’s Lakeside near Cedar Lake where Girten “consumed a large amount of alcoholic beverages.”

Girten’s blood alcohol content was reportedly .22 when he arrived by ambulance at an Oklahoma City hospital and .185 in an Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigations (OSBI) blood draw, according to the affidavit.

An attorney representing Flores’ widow in November 2020 filed a wrongful death lawsuit against Girten and Lyanna’s Lakeside, LLC in Pushmataha County District Court.

The civil case was transferred in June 2021 to Canadian County District Court.

A dismissal with prejudice “to the filing of a future action” was filed Oct. 26, 2021, court records show.