Man Charged with DUI Manslaughter in Chief Landers’ Death
The Florida man accused of killing Lowell Police Chief Joe Landers was charged with DUI manslaughter Tuesday, according to a report from WMBB in Panama City.
Lowell Mayor Eldon Long says this brings a sense of justice to Landers’ family and the community.
“Of course this will bring closure to the family and I think it’s a step in our community healing, knowing that this matter is going to be investigated and there will be a trial,” says Long.
Jimmy John Christo, Jr., 52, is also charged with possession of marijuana and leaving the scene of a crash with death after the April 27 hit and run at Panama City Beach.
Landers, 51, who was in Florida attending the Thunder Beach Motorcycle Rally as a spectator, was injured when a Toyota Camry driven by Christo pulled out in front of his motorcycle without signaling.
Landers was ejected from the motorcycle, over the hood of the car and suffered a fractured skull, broken pelvis and broken arm among other injuries. He died from his injuries at Bay Medical Center.
Landers was not wearing a helmet, according to troopers.
Long and Detective Sgt. Pillaro both say they are happy with the recent charges because it shows the legal system is working.
“Now that this news comes to light, i think that when we kind of sit back several weeks from it and think about it we know that justice will be done,” says Long.
“We’re glad that justice is being served, we knew that it would be, we knew that the Florida Highway Patrol was taking care of it, investigating it and taking their time to make sure they got everything right,” says Pillaro.