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Oct 10, 2002


The man who police said ran a red light while driving drunk and killed a man was denied bond Friday and returned to custody.

Steven V. Arcese, 50, has been in the Virginia Beach city jail since Nov. 8, when police charged him with aggravated involuntary manslaughter in the death of David Fisher.

Fisher, 26, and his children, 3-year-old James and 6-month-old Amber, were heading to pick up Fisher’s wife on Nov. 3 when their car was struck by a sport-utility vehicle southbound on London Bridge Road that failed to stop for a traffic light at the intersection of Dam Neck Road. Neither of the children was seriously hurt.

Arcese was charged with DUI and refusing to take a blood alcohol test that night. Five days later, he was charged with aggravated involuntary manslaughter.

On Friday, General District Court Judge Virginia L. Cochran rejected arguments by Arcese’s attorney, Mark T. Del Duca, that Arcese be allowed the opportunity to post a bond. Del Duca said he would appeal the decision to Circuit Court, where a hearing is likely next week.

The victim’s father and Mike L. Goodove, president of the local chapter of Mothers Against Drunk Driving, applauded Cochran’s decision.

“He needs to stay where he is,” Jim Fisher said.

“Arcese’s previous record, coupled with his actions leading up to the death of Mr. Fisher, strongly support the decision of Judge Cochran,” Goodove said.

Arcese was charged with DUI and convicted of reckless driving in 1988. He was convicted of DUI in 1994. He has other non-driving convictions from the 1980s.

Arcese had attended a wine tasting before the crash, prosecutors said.

According to prosecutor Susan Goldsticker, Arcese’s blood-alcohol level after the accident was estimated to be two to three times the legal limit of 0.08.

Arcese’s blood-alcohol level was tested at a hospital where he was taken for treatment after the accident.