A Georgia man recently was sentenced to 15 years in prison for a 2017 crash that left four members of a family injured. His blood alcohol content (BAC) at the time of the crash was .29 percent, which is more than three times the legal limit in the state.
The man, 48, also was sentenced to 15 years of probation. A resident of Athens, he was found guilty after a four-day trial of four counts of serious injury by motor vehicle, as well as one count of driving without a license and another count of failure to maintain lane.
Why did the judge impose such a long sentence? Because he had seven earlier drunk-driving convictions on his record.
According to the prosecutor, the judge said at sentencing that "he could not ignore the defendant's seven prior convictions for driving under the influence and the collision could have easily killed the entire family."
The crash happened in May 2017 when the man, driving a pickup truck, hit a car carrying a couple and their four daughters.
The woman, who was in the front passenger seat, suffered a broken arm and a broken leg. One of the daughters, who was riding in the back seat, suffered a broken wrist and pelvis, a concussion and lost two teeth.
It is fortunate none of the family members suffered life-threatening injuries. This story, however, also shows a failure for the driver to get the help he needed through the years. There are programs available in Georgia where people charged with DUI can get treatment for their issues with alcohol. Attorneys experienced in DUI cases are ready to advocate for them.