Be on the Lookout For: Parent Convicted for Child's Accidental Death
Mother convicted of second-degree vehicular homicide, though she wasn't driving.
July 28, 2011— -- A hit-and-run accident in suburban Atlanta last year left a 4-year-old boy dead and his mother and a sister injured. The driver, Jerry Guy, admitted his involvement and served six months in jail. It was his third hit-and-run encounter, according to police.
He pled guilty and received a five-year sentence. He is now out on parole.
In an unusual twist, the victim's mother, Raquel Nelson, was convicted of second-degree vehicular homicide and other charges and faced a maximum three-year sentence. Her crime? Jaywalking.
In April 2010, Nelson and her three children crossed a busy four-lane road and made it safely to the median. Then, according to Nelson's attorney, David Savoy, her son darted across the street and she followed with her 2-year-old in her arms. All three were struck.
Earlier this week, Cobb County Judge Kathryn Tanksley sentenced Nelson to 12 months of probation and 40 hours of community service. She had failed to use the crosswalk.
In another surprise move, the judge offered to schedule a new trial for Nelson, declining to comment on the decision.
Nelson's attorney, Savoy, said she is still weighing the offer.
So, be on the lookout when you think about jaywalking. The consequences might be greater than you expect.