A woman has been sentenced to seven years for an accident that killed a Georgia deputy. The wreck, which was the result of a drunk driver, occurred in 2012. The judge decreed that the woman must serve time due to the display of recklessness in the time leading up to the crash.
The woman who has been found guilty was drinking in a club in the hours before the accident. Evidence of another purchase at a different alcohol establishment right before the accident was also presented at trial. The accident occurred on an early June morning on busy Interstate 95. Video evidence shows that the deputy had turned on his emergency lights just before his cruiser was hit by the woman.
She was reportedly traveling in the wrong lane of the interstate at the time of the violent collision. The officer did attempt to avoid the impact, but he was unable to get out of the woman’s path. The deputy was retrieved from the vehicle before it caught fire, but his injuries were not survivable.
The judge did not respond favorably to a request of leniency from the woman’s defense team at trial. He stated that the woman demonstrated recklessness and indifference at the time leading up to the wreck and as a result of her actions, a man died at the hands of a drunk driver. The family of this fallen Georgia deputy could also decide to file a wrongful death suit against the woman who was responsible for their loss. The criminal courts have already found her guilty of vehicular homicide and the civil courts have a lesser degree of proof required to find in favor of victims’ families. A successful civil case could allow this family to relieve the monetary burdens that this tragic event has possibly left in its aftermath.
Source: savannahnow.com, “Collins sentenced to seven years to serve in prison in 2012 death of Bryan County deputy”, Jan Skutch, April 29, 2014