And the verdict is... - May 11, 2006
The following release was submitted by Snider High School's SADD group On April 28 during a 4th period assembly, the Snider High School auditorium became Allen County Superior Court Judge Fran Gull's courtroom. Judge Gull was there along with Deputy Prosecuting Attorney Adam Mildred and Arata Law Office Defense Attorney John Kitch to help stage a mock sentencing for a teen who plead guilty to vehicular homicide, injury to others and driving while intoxicated during the school's mock crash in 2005. The prosecuting attorney presented victim's impact statements including one from a firefighter, Capt. Holly Volz, who reported what firefighters experience when they arrive at the scene of a fatality; especially involving a teen. The mother of the boy who died in the drama and the girl paralyzed in the mock crash both spoke of how life had changed for them. The defense attorney presented character witnesses for the defendant including the mom who had the party where the alcohol was consumed. When the mom blurted out this fact and her regrets, she was arrested on the spot and charged with a Class C Felony. At the conclusion of the hearing, Judge Gull sentenced the 18 year old defendant to four years on the C Felony OWI causing death (maximum is 8 years), 1½ years on the D Felony OWI causing serious bodily harm to Monica (paralyzed) and 1½ years for the D Felony OWI causing serious bodily harm to Alan (maximum is 3 years each charge). Sentences were ordered to be served consecutively as there were three victims for a net sentence of 7 years in the Department of Correction. The judge also suspended her license for 15 year following her prison time. (5 years for each count) Almost 500 students completed an evaluation of this drama. Many students agreed with Judge Gull's ruling however some students would have let the defendant off all together while others wanted her to go to jail for life. The overwhelming reaction to the drama was positive because it raised awareness that driving while impaired is no accident and that every action has consequences. Snider had a successful prom weekend and hopes this message carries forward to graduation and the upcoming summer vacation. SADD (Students Against Destructive Decisions) would like to thank the following people for giving their time and talent to present this drama: Judge Fran Gull, Allen County Superior Court; Battalion Chief Ken Kunze, FWFD; Adam Mildred, Deputy Prosecutor; Chris Crapser, FWPD, Snider SRO; John Kitch, Arata Law Office; Dan Vought, Media Center; Les Thomas, Allen County Bailiff; Karen Hines, drama teacher; Susan Banta, FWFD - Public Information Officer; Holly Volz, captain FWFD; Actors: Emma Meyer, Raquel Hopton, Alix Doran; Ashlee Rice; Jacob McGee; Emily Kirk; Terri Tutton and Susan Banta; and Brandon Wolf and Dustin Wolf, tech support.