31-year old Cory Mezo seemed remorseful as he read an apology statement to his victim’s family in court just minutes prior to being given an 84-month prison statement for the felony charge of vehicular assault and three counts of hit and run, as reported in the Bellingham Herald.
Many say this is a joke sentence
The tragic incident happened on November 24th, 2013. Bars were in the process of closing as people left for their homes in downtown Bellingham. Emma Lee Briceno was trying to cross East Chestnut Street when she was hit by a black 2002 Lincoln Sedan. The impact lifted her off her feet as she hit the windscreen of the car and fell onto the road, which resulted in critical head and other injuries. The driver of the Lincoln sped off and hit another car in the process.
Hit and run victim permanently paralyzed
The victim’s father said in a statement that Mezo had hit his daughter and then left her to die and there was no forgiving someone who had committed such a heinous and inhuman act.
An ambulance chopper transported Briceno to Harborview Medical Centre in Seattle where she remained in an injury induced coma for nearly two months and was treated for severe injuries to her skull, spine, brain, arm and pelvis. Briceno remains disabled until today due to the injuries sustained in that crash and she still cannot walk or talk.
The number plate of the car had come loose and fallen on the road. Investigators found this crucial piece of evidence and traced the car as belonging to the girlfriend of Mezo who was engaged to marry him. Another key piece of information was unraveled when one of Mezo’s passengers called 911 and testified against Mezo. In his description, James Lorden said that Mezo was driving with no regard for anyone’s safety.
At the time of the accident, no occupant in the car had a clean record. Prosser was awaiting trial on multiple charges including DUI and theft for taking his estranged wife’s vehicle. Lorden, the other passenger, has a record of domestic violence assault and has also spent time in jail for theft.
Washington Senate votes in favor of bill that makes fourth DUI a felony
According to the Spokesman, the Washington State senate unanimously voted for the passage of a bill which makes a fourth offense alcohol impaired or drug impaired driving a felony offense. The bill was initially proposed by Senator Mike Padden as an extra measure to curb DUI related accidents and deaths in the state. The bill received credible support based on the grounds that repeat DUI offenders should lose their privileges to drive and are a liability to everyone.
According to crime reports, Washington State has one of the highest numbers of drunken driving related deaths in the nation on average every year. According to Bellingham WA DUI attorneys, the state will now be able to prosecute repeat offenders and deliver them a possible 13-17 month prison sentence.
Seemingly, Senate members didn’t need much convincing to co-sponsor the legislation but nevertheless Linda Thompson, who lost her son and daughter to drunken drivers, shared her story and suffering with members. There a plenitude of hard working attorneys on USAttorneys.com that are ready to work with people like Linda.
Her children were riding in a horse drawn cart when a man who had been drinking all night long lost control of his vehicle and crashed into them. It killed her two children, a 23-year old woman and broke the horse’s leg.