Alvert Miller
Alvert Miller (Courtesy of San Juan County Adult Detention Center)

FARMINGTON — A 39-year-old Shiprock man was sentenced Wednesday to six years in federal prison, followed by five years of supervised release, in relation to an alcohol-related crash in April 2013 that killed Herman Miller.

The U.S. Department of Justice said in a press release that Alvert Miller was driving while intoxicated on U.S. Highway 491 on April 27 when he lost control of his vehicle near Littlewater.

The truck rolled over and killed the passenger, identified in court records as Herman Miller, 60. Paramedics at the scene noted Alvert Miller smelled like liquor, and a breathalyzer administered by police nearly eight hours after the crash registered his blood-alcohol content as .05, court records state. Based on the rate at which the body metabolizes alcohol, police estimate Alvert Miller's blood-alcohol content was .17 at the time of the crash, more than twice the legal limit for operating a motor vehicle.

Alvert Miller admitted in a statement to police that he was drinking before the crash fell asleep behind the wheel, court records state. He pleaded guilty on April 23 to second-degree murder through a plea agreement with prosecutors.