In Illinois, if you commit a DUI that causes the death of another, you would be charged with a felony and would face a prison sentence of three to fourteen years, unless you could prove that extraordinary circumstances exist to support a sentence of probation.
Apparently, in Georgia, the same crime would only be a misdemeanor, and you would face no more than the possibility of one year in jail.
Thus, it was lucky for former NBA star Mookie Blaylock that his DUI, which caused the death of the mother of five children happened in Clayton County, Georgia. As a result, he will spend only a total of 16 days in jail.
From the Atlanta Journal-Constitution:
Blaylock, 46, pleaded guilty Monday to DUI and hit-and-run charges stemming from an incident last March, a spokeswoman for the State Court of Spalding County said Tuesday. He was sentenced to 30 days in jail, but was credited for the 14 days he served, attorney Don Samuel told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. Within 48 hours of his release from jail, Blaylock must report to an in-patient rehabilitation program, Samuel said.
On March 20, 2013, Blaylock’s 46th birthday, he was spotted staggering toward a grocery store and fell in the parking lot after allegedly hitting a vehicle, the Spalding County Sheriff’s Office report stated. Then on May 31, Blaylock allegedly caused a head-on crash in Clayton County that killed a 40-year-old mother of five, according to police.
Blaylock was critically injured in the crash, but later turned himself in and was jailed in Clayton County on charges of second-degree vehicular homicide, driving on a suspended license, failure to maintain lane and crossing a center median. His bond was set at $250,000 in that case due to his history of DUIs, although there is no evidence indicating Blaylock was the under the influence at the time of crash.
“I believe often times DUIs are vehicular homicides that didn’t occur,” Judge Daphne Walker said at the time. “It’s something that I take very seriously, even though under the law they’re treated as misdemeanors.”