On Thursday October 3, 37-year-old Constance Johnson of Ypsilanti Township was sentenced to 4 to 15 years in prison for the death of her infant son, caused by a crash which allegedly occurred while she was driving under the influence.
According to police, Johnson and her infant son, Isiah, were in a mini-van in October of 2012 as she drove east on Foley Avenue in Ypsilanti Township at approximately 5:30 in the morning. Johnson’s mini-van struck a parked pickup truck, fatally injuring Isiah, who died a week later. While news reports at Mlive.com indicate he was in a carrier, it was not strapped in and was placed in the front seat.
Johnson was initially charged with homicide-manslaughter with a motor vehicle, involuntary manslaughter, and alcohol-open container, however prosecutors dismissed these charges as part of her plea agreement, In the plea deal, Johnson pleaded no contest to operating while intoxicated causing death, second-degree child abuse, and operating a vehicle with a suspended license causing death. Judge David Swartz sentenced her to 50 months to 15 years on all three of the charges, with sentence terms to run concurrently.
This is no doubt a tragic story. While Johnson will spend a significant amount of time in prison, the worst punishment of all will be the fact that she must live with her son’s death for the rest of her life. People often get behind the wheel of a vehicle after having consumed alcohol, believing they are perfectly capable of driving in a safe manner. Sometimes they do not get caught, other times, such as this one, the consequences are devastating.
Individuals who are accused of a criminal offense including involuntary manslaughter, child abuse, DUI, or even something as serious as armed robbery or murder must consult with a skilled and aggressive Michigan criminal defense attorney right away. A dedicated lawyer will work vigorously to protect your freedom and legal rights, and to defend you from the harsh criminal penalties of a conviction.