Megan Margarum, the 19-year-old prosecutors implicated in the 2010 wreck that killed Joseph Grant Laverty, was sentenced Monday to 45 days in jail and about 10 months’ probation after pleading guilty to misdemeanors.
Margarum pleaded guilty to reckless driving, speeding and obstruction of an officer. Prosecutors dismissed a charge of racing on a highway.
The wreck happened May 15, 2010, on Mobley Road. Authorities say Margarum was driving west in one car. Chad R. Starling, 21, and Laverty, 17, were behind her in another vehicle. At some point, Starling tried to pass Margarum, his one-time girlfriend.
Witnesses told investigators that both vehicles were going between 80 and 90 mph.
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“There were pedestrians, including a witness who was walking a dog,” said special prosecutor Todd Hayes.
Starling’s Honda Civic crossed into the eastbound lane of traffic, according to court testimony. This put his vehicle in the path of an oncoming SUV driven by 19-year-old Steven Hodge. Starling swerved back behind Margarum, lost control of his car and spun out. Once again, his Civic crossed the center line, but this time it collided with Hodge’s SUV, police said.
Laverty was extricated from the car and taken to The Medical Center, where he died.
Hodge, who initially faced vehicular homicide charges, pleaded guilty in January to two DUIs, including one less than a year after the fatal crash.
One DUI stemmed from the May 2010 wreck. The other DUI happened in February 2011, court records state.
Starling pleaded guilty two weeks after Hodge to vehicular homicide and was sentenced to eight years in prison, followed by seven years’ probation.