Monday, July 25, 2011

Georgia woman mourns her son's hit-and-run death while facing 36 months in jail for jaywalking

As if losing your 4-year-old child isn't hard enough, Raquel Nelson has to await sentencing for allegedly "jaywalking" on the day of her son's death.

On April 10, 2010, Nelson and her three children were crossing a busy Marietta street when a car came and impaled all three children, killing one. "[The young boy] flew up in the air," claimed an eye witness.

This is the scene of the crime. You can see the distance between the stop and the cross walk.
As a regular user of public transportation, she had missed the bus that day. Her apartment is right across the street from the bus stop, and the nearest crosswalk is nearly a half a mile away, so she crossed one side of the divided highway to the median, where she waited for a break in the traffic. This was not out of the ordinary for anyone. This is what everyone did to cross the street, simply because the next crosswalk was so far.

Jerry Guy
According to the Huffington Post, "Police were able to track down the driver, Jerry Guy, who later admitted he had been drinking and had taken painkillers the night of the accident. He was also mostly blind in one eye. Guy had already been convicted of two prior hit-and-runs."

Could this story get any more tragic? Yes. What if I were to tell you that this broken mother is facing more time in jail than the man that killed her child AND fled the scene? SIX TIMES more, in fact.

How is that possible?

The Huffington Post reports that, "Last week Nelson herself was convicted on three charges related to her son's death: reckless conduct, improperly crossing a roadway and second-degree homicide by vehicle. Each is a misdemeanor, punishable by up to 12 months in prison."

Jerry Guy plead guilty over a year ago, and was initially sentenced to five years in prison. However, he was released after just six months.

This is the eldest daughter being walked off of the scene after being struck. She was the only child that was not injured.
Raquel Nelson is a single mother with three children, living in a busy Atlanta suburb who has to rely on city transportation to get by. Nelson claims that the jury who sentenced her could not relate to the conditions that she lived in.

What is considered "justice" in this case?