DUI driver gets life sentence for killing 4 motorcyclists!

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HYPERR
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DUI driver gets life sentence for killing 4 motorcyclists!

#1 Unread post by HYPERR » Sat Jul 16, 2011 6:40 am

Well about time a DUI murderer was brought to justice!

Kudos to the judge, our court system, organizations like the AMA, and the fellow motorcycle club members who attended the trial! :D

RIP fellow motorcyclists... :(


DUI motorist receives life sentence
Bob Reichman
Wednesday, July 13, 2011 at 9:47 am (Updated: July 14, 7:27 am)

An Oxford motorist was sentenced last week to life imprisonment for killing four motorcyclists last year while attempting to pass a slower-moving vehicle.

Paul Sermons, 46, was given four concurrent life sentences last Wednesday when he appeared for sentencing before Circuit Court Judge William Hallman III.
In June, a jury convicted Sermons of DUI manslaughter. The same jury found Sermons innocent on four counts of vehicular homicide.

Sermons was traveling west on County Road 476 on March 13, 2010, in a 1991 GMC pickup when he attempted to pass a 2003 truck being driven by Melissa Pike, then 27, of Floral City.

Sermons’ vehicle struck two oncoming motorcycles carrying four motorcyclists, killing everyone on the bikes.
All four riders were ejected from the bikes and one, a female passenger, crashed into the windshield of the truck that Sermons attempted to pass.

Three of the bikers died at the scene and the fourth, a woman, was flown to a local hospital where she died of her injuries a short time later.

Killed in the accident on a 2003 Harley-Davidson were its operator, John Holmes, 55, of Beverly Hills, and his passenger, Patricia Biehayn, 52, of Hernando County. Aboard the other bike, a 2005 Harley-Davidson, was the driver, William Barker, 54, of Stuart, and his passenger, Patricia Poole, 55, of Mount Dora.

Pike and her passenger Michael Rogers received minor injuries in the accident, according to an FHP accident report.
Members of several motorcycle clubs, notably ABATE, an activist club that campaigns for legislation on behalf of motorcyclists had frequently attended Sermons’ court hearings and his trial.

Following the sentencing, state prosecutor William Catto said he believes the sentence was justified.
“I feel it was a fair sentence under the circumstances,” he said. “It’s a tragedy but it’s fair.

http://www.sumtercountytimes.com/conten ... e-sentence
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Re: DUI driver gets life sentence for killing 4 motorcyclist

#2 Unread post by mogster » Sat Jul 16, 2011 2:31 pm

I don't know much about your legal system, but that seems a just result for the crimes.

R.I.P. X 4
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Re: DUI driver gets life sentence for killing 4 motorcyclist

#3 Unread post by HYPERR » Sat Jul 16, 2011 7:06 pm

mogster wrote:I don't know much about your legal system, but that seems a just result for the crimes.
Our (US) legal system is usually a joke when it comes to DUI crimes and even vehicular manslaughter criminals don't get much more than a very short jailterm and it gets even worse when the victim is a motorcyclist. This is a total shocker as this is the first I have ever heard of anything even remotely close to justice being served in a DUI vehicular manslaughter case.
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Re: DUI driver gets life sentence for killing 4 motorcyclist

#4 Unread post by QuietMonkey » Thu Jul 21, 2011 12:23 am

wow. 4 dead. that's a terrible accident. if a driver does something like that and has any conscience he/she is in for a lot of reflection of there choices in life.

the punishment may indeed fit the crime, but maybe not. I think they let people off too easily on most "smaller" offences, and then punish them too harshly for others. The offence of drinking and driving to me is a stupid thing regardless of whether someone (or some animal) dies or another persons property is damaged. If no one died it's still a very risky situation to be driving in and yet people arent punished UNTIL someone dies. That is to say, we arent punishing the person for the cause of the accident, but moreso the result of the accident. Therefore it's a flawed logic/method of law enforcement.

I'd like to make people pay with there wallet a little more often too. i.e. having your insurance only cover the damage to other peoples property/person and NOT covering your own property in the accident. So if it's PL/PD coverage only then the selfish should be more motivated to understand that they'll be paying to repair/replace there own property when they screw up. This has longer-term consequences for some, but wealth being unbalanced it is not entirely fair either, although cars being a status/fashion thing may often often represent a person's personal choice of the value of the vehicle with more accuracy than other things.

To me the obvious incentive of the $$$ to fix your own vehicle would work MUCH better than any other change to the legal system, because these sorts of people (about 50% of our society i'd say) dont give a f--- about much more than themselves most of the time, especially when they are making the decision to drink and drive, or just to drive stupidly in general (while talking on the phone, etc).

a nice jail term is worthwhile too, better than pulling there license. start with weekend terms, community service, etc.

simple. hit em where it hurts. rich or poor, no one wants there freedom taken away and to be stuffed behind bars.
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Re: DUI driver gets life sentence for killing 4 motorcyclist

#5 Unread post by Brackstone » Fri Jul 29, 2011 8:43 am

mogster wrote:I don't know much about your legal system, but that seems a just result for the crimes.

R.I.P. X 4
Typically when a motorcyclist is involved they just get a slap on the wrist. I believe the thinking is "yes it's bad that drunky was drunk driving, but if those motorcyclists were in cars they probably would not have been dead." Then they usually give drunky 60 days community service or something like that and send him off.

This is the first time I can remember a fair sentence for a DUI offender.
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Re: DUI driver gets life sentence for killing 4 motorcyclist

#6 Unread post by ceemes » Sat Jul 30, 2011 10:26 am

I have known a lot of people who are rabid anti-drinking and driving and who demand stiffer penalties for those that do drink and drive. And yet these same people do not think twice about jumping behind the wheel of a car or onto a bike after sparking up a doobie or two. Indeed some of them actually toke up while driving.

Personally I prefer the term Impaired Driving as to either Drunk Driving or DUI. And anything that impairs you ability to safely operate a motor vehicle or causes you to endanger the life and limb of other motorist and the general public should carry the same penalty. If you ingest, inhale or inject a psychotropic substance, be it alcohol, THC, an opate or whatever and then take control of a motor vehicle, then you are impaired and deserve the full penalty of the law. However is seems a lot of people cannot wrap their tiny brians around this simple concept. In far too many peoples minds, booze + cars = bad ........ pot + cars = okay
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Re: DUI driver gets life sentence for killing 4 motorcyclist

#7 Unread post by Wrider » Sat Jul 30, 2011 7:33 pm

ceemes wrote:I have known a lot of people who are rabid anti-drinking and driving and who demand stiffer penalties for those that do drink and drive. And yet these same people do not think twice about jumping behind the wheel of a car or onto a bike after sparking up a doobie or two. Indeed some of them actually toke up while driving.

Personally I prefer the term Impaired Driving as to either Drunk Driving or DUI. And anything that impairs you ability to safely operate a motor vehicle or causes you to endanger the life and limb of other motorist and the general public should carry the same penalty. If you ingest, inhale or inject a psychotropic substance, be it alcohol, THC, an opiate or whatever and then take control of a motor vehicle, then you are impaired and deserve the full penalty of the law. However is seems a lot of people cannot wrap their tiny brains around this simple concept. In far too many peoples minds, booze + cars = bad ........ pot + cars = okay
Down here DUI and DWAI both refer to any sort of mind altering substance, whether it be pot, alcohol, or even vicodin (prescribed or not).
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Re: DUI driver gets life sentence for killing 4 motorcyclist

#8 Unread post by dr_bar » Sun Jul 31, 2011 6:17 pm

Being tired is an impairment too' and has been treated by the law as such to a trucker I knew.
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Re: DUI driver gets life sentence for killing 4 motorcyclist

#9 Unread post by ceemes » Sun Jul 31, 2011 8:26 pm

Wrider wrote:
ceemes wrote:I have known a lot of people who are rabid anti-drinking and driving and who demand stiffer penalties for those that do drink and drive. And yet these same people do not think twice about jumping behind the wheel of a car or onto a bike after sparking up a doobie or two. Indeed some of them actually toke up while driving.

Personally I prefer the term Impaired Driving as to either Drunk Driving or DUI. And anything that impairs you ability to safely operate a motor vehicle or causes you to endanger the life and limb of other motorist and the general public should carry the same penalty. If you ingest, inhale or inject a psychotropic substance, be it alcohol, THC, an opiate or whatever and then take control of a motor vehicle, then you are impaired and deserve the full penalty of the law. However is seems a lot of people cannot wrap their tiny brains around this simple concept. In far too many peoples minds, booze + cars = bad ........ pot + cars = okay
Down here DUI and DWAI both refer to any sort of mind altering substance, whether it be pot, alcohol, or even vicodin (prescribed or not).
That well may be, however far too many people can't wrap their tiny little minds around the concept. When you say DUI to most, they automatically think booze and drunk driving. And sadly, far too many will not accept they can be as equally impaired toking up instead downing a few beers.
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Re: DUI driver gets life sentence for killing 4 motorcyclist

#10 Unread post by vampfiend687 » Mon Aug 08, 2011 9:24 pm

When I was little, my aunt was killed by a drunk driver, he got slapped with fine. he died 2 years later when he wasn't so lucky drinking and driving. Stories like this, as sad as they are, make me a little happy to see some justice.
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