New York – Fox News
Driver who killed 5 in crash had ‘second largest level’ of marijuana seen by medical examiner in living specimen: report
Jamel Turner was sentenced to 27 years in jail for vehicular manslaughter and several other charges linked to the Valentine’s Day 2018 crash on Long Island when he rear-ended a car on the highway while traveling 154 miles per hour, the New York Times reported. All of the victims burned alive, prosecutors said.
Turner was driving four times the legal 40 mph speed limit or approximately “the speed at which jetliners take off,” Suffolk district attorney, Timothy Sini, said at the sentencing hearing. The medical examiner said Turner had the “the second-highest level of marijuana that they’ve ever seen in a living specimen” at the time of the crash, Sini added.
Turner, who was driving a stolen Chevy Camaro, plowed into the McCoy family’s Mazda, which then hit another car and careened into an oil truck until catching fire. All four passengers in the Mazda were burned alive.
Turner’s friend and dog were also killed when they were thrown from the Camaro. The driver of the oil truck suffered severe injuries to his neck and spine. Turner, who is a convicted drug dealer with a lengthy record, pleaded guilty to the charges against him connected to the crash earlier this year.
Before the sentencing hearing Tuesday, he refused to leave his jail cell and wanted to withdraw his guilty plea. Justice Fernando Camacho denied the request and threatened Turner could lose his plea deal and face life in prison if he did not show in court.
Once in court, Turner issued a brief apology to the relatives of the deceased to which Camacho reiterated that he had “wiped out an entire family” who was “burned alive,” the New York Times reported.
What Marijuana legalization did to car accident rates. Washington Post.
Marijuana playing larger role in fatal crashes. USA Today – June 9, 2014.