Judge: Fatal Teen DUI Case Shows Weakness in Nevada Law

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

A judge who sentenced a 16-year-old driver to two years in juvenile detention in a crash that killed three friends said the case shows the need for new juvenile justice laws in Nevada.

Clark County Family Court Judge William Voy said he hoped the 2005 Legislature will consider letting juveniles convicted of serious crimes be transferred to an adult prison at age 18.

Voy said also the state needs a facility for the long-term housing of juvenile offenders between the ages 16 and 21.

"I hope we will use this case as an example of why we need change," he said.

Voy on Monday sentenced the Henderson boy to two years in Clark County juvenile detention and 600 hours of community service in the Nov. 10 crash.

Prosecutors wanted to try the boy as an adult, but he pleaded guilty as a juvenile to felony drunk and reckless driving. Involuntary manslaughter charges will be dismissed if he successfully completes probation at age 21.

The boy's name initially was reported as an injured victim following the crash. It is being withheld following his plea as a juvenile.

The boy made a tearful plea for forgiveness Monday, and family members offered statements about the deaths of 15-year-olds Travis Dunning, Josh Parry and Kyle Poff. A fourth passenger, Cody Fredericks, was hurt but survived.

Authorities said the boy's blood-alcohol percentage was 0.19 - more than twice the state limit of .08 percent. He was also driving 80 mph on a 25 mph street before his car slammed into a wall.

His community service requires him to make presentations to area high school students about the dangers of drinking and driving.


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