Friday, January 14, 2011

The Ethical Prosecutor Challenge

In Nashville a family is devastated. A 3rd offense impaired driver ran into their 22 year old daughter, who was a pedestrian. Then he left the scene. Two weeks later he turned himself in. Two weeks later there was no way to determine his blood alcohol level. There was no way to discover evidence from his vehicle. The driver, Jason Guy, 33, was the Director of Alive Hospice. He benefitted from his choice to leave the scene and to leave 22 year old Carrie Holmes behind. He has now pled guilty to Leaving the Scene and 3rd offense DUI. He gets 2 years in prison, but will probably be out much sooner with parole eligibility.
The A.D.A. had to do what he believed to be the right thing. That's the ethical duty of every prosecutor. It is not always easy.
The right thing was far from satisfactory to a broken father and mother, who will never fully recover. Their sentence is a life sentence. That's a life of grief, disappointment and probably anger. We can only hope and pray for healing for these loving parents.
The biggest question of all is a simple one. Mr. Guy worked for a hospice. At the hospice they provide life sustaining care for those who are dying. How does a person like that leave another person to die on the side of the road? How does a person like that repeatedly endanger the lives of others by driving impaired? We may never know. Any answer would sound like a shabby excuse two weeks after the crime.

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