Suspect in cheerleader's killing has criminal record, history of drinking
The the 26-year-old accused of driving drunk and killing an Irvine cheerleader has a record of substance abuse, according to documents and court records.
Austin Jeffrey Farley of Irvine has been convicted of drunk driving and has a series of driving infractions and criminal offenses, including battery, resisting arrest, vandalism and petty and grand theft dating back to 2002, according to court records. Those records show that his parents filed a criminal protective order against him Dec. 27, requiring him to stay at least 300 yards away from them and barring him from making contact.
A letter from the owner of a sober living home in Mission Viejo dated Jan. 10 said Farley was ready to leave treatment in January, adding that he had contributed to and taken part in activities at the center, Home Life Sober Living. Farley was also admitted to Sunrise Recovery Ranch in Riverside on May 6, 2010.
"As a human being, as a person, I feel terrible for their family," Farley said in a jail house interview. "They're making me out to be a monster, and I'm not. Like any average American human being with a heart, it's a tragedy. Whether I was in the accident or not, I would be upset. I'm not an animal. I'm just a person."
-- Lauren Williams, Daily Pilot / Times Community News
Photo: A portrait of Ashton Sweet is posted at a roadside memorial at Irvine Boulevard and Culver Drive in Irvine where the 14-year-old Northwood High School student and cheerleader was killed in an automobile accident by a suspected drunk driver May 29. Credit: Mark Boster / Los Angeles Times