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Local News

DUI Case Against Soap Opera Actress Jensen Buchanan Continued

Authorities allege she was more than four times over legal limit at time of crash that injured the other driver

Soap opera actress Jensen Buchanan appears in court in Santa Maria last year. She is facing multiple felony charges, including DUI, stemming from a crash on May 18,, 2016, in which the other driver was seriously injured. Her case has been continued until March.
Soap opera actress Jensen Buchanan appears in court in Santa Maria last year. She is facing multiple felony charges, including DUI, stemming from a crash on May 18,, 2016, in which the other driver was seriously injured. Her case has been continued until March. (Noozhawk file photo)

The case against a veteran soap opera actress accused of driving drunk and causing a crash in the Santa Ynez Valley that seriously injured another driver has been continued until March 15.

Jensen Buchanan, 54, faces several charges, including felony driving under the influence of alcohol causing injury and felony driving with a blood-alcohol level of .08 percent or greater. 

She also is charged with causing great bodily injury to Bradley Asolas, 56, of Camarillo, and an allegation her blood-alcohol level exceeded .15 percent.

Court documents allege Buchanan was driving with a blood-alcohol level of .34 — more than four times the level at which a driver is considered drunk under the law — when the crash occurred at about 6:20 a.m. May 18 on Highway 154.

Buchanan was driving a Mercedes S550 east on Highway 154 when her vehicle drifted across the double yellow line directly into the path of a westbound Ford C-Max near the Live Oak Camp entrance, according to the California Highway Patrol. 

During the Santa Barbara County Superior Court hearing Wednesday morning in Santa Maria, Buchanan’s attorney requested the Probation Department prepare a pre-plea report.

The 2-month delay gives probation officials time to complete the report, Deputy District Attorney Tiffany Dix said.

When the case returns to court in March, a preliminary hearing will be scheduled unless a plea deal is reached. 

Buchanan appeared on numerous soap operas in nearly three decades, including most recently on The Young and the Restless in 2015, and previously on One Life to Live and Another World. 

Noozhawk North County editor Janene Scully can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address). Follow Noozhawk on Twitter: @noozhawk, @NoozhawkNews and @NoozhawkBiz. Connect with Noozhawk on Facebook.

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