NEW BEDFORD — A New Bedford drunk driver will spend up to seven years in prison after pleading guilty to vehicular manslaughter in the 2018 death of a Dartmouth father of two.

The Bristol County District Attorney's Office said 31-year-old Justin Castro was sentenced on Monday to a five- to seven-year prison term in connection to a crash that killed 39-year-old David Dos Santos (pictured) in November 2018.

At around 1:30 a.m. on Nov. 13, 2018, New Bedford police were called to a two-vehicle crash at Kempton Street and Brownell Avenue.

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They arrived to find a heavily damaged Toyota Corolla with Dos Santos unresponsive inside.

He was later pronounced dead.

Justin Castro was found in his damaged Chevrolet Cruze and was rushed to Rhode Island Hospital.

His blood alcohol content was .228, almost three times the legal limit, according to the D.A.'s office.

A witness later stated that Castro was speeding on Kempton Street and went through a red light, hitting Dos Santos, who authorities believe was on his way home from work.

Dos Santos worked full time as a watchmaker and jeweler at Gilbert's Jewelers on Pleasant Street in Fall River, but also worked part time at Slainte Irish Pub in New Bedford.

According to the D.A.'s office, two weeks before the fatal crash, Dos Santos had helped save the life of a shooting victim who came to the jewelry store bleeding from a gunshot wound in his leg.

He left behind two daughters, parents, a sister and brother-in-law, a niece and several nephews, and many other family members and friends, according to his obituary.

Castro had consumed alcohol at several establishments before the crash, and was later found to have been driving 61 miles per hour in a 35mph speed limit zone.


"As a result of being highly intoxicated, the defendant killed an innocent man. This case is a tragedy for all people involved," said Bristol County District Attorney Thomas Quinn.

"My heart goes out to the victim’s family for their loss, which they will never recover from," he added.

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