Vicki Fielding, 51 pleaded guilty on Wednesday (Jan. 29) to negligent homicide, according to Sebastian County Prosecuting Attorney Daniel Shue.
According to Shue, she was also found guilty of DWI.
Nathanael Dejarnett, 20, of Wellington, Kan., was walking down the center lane on Greenwood Avenue in Fort Smith on Oct. 27, 2013 when he was struck by what is described by police as a 1992 pickup truck. He was declared dead at the scene, and his body was transported to the Sebastian County Coroner’s Office, according to an Arkansas State Police crash report.
Fielding was sentenced to 20 years in prison on Wednesday.
Her legal file was obtained from the Sebastian County Prosecutor’s Office, and it showed Fielding has been convicted with DWI five times in the past, the most recent in Oct. 1998.
University of Arkansas – Fort Smith law professor Lynn Lisk said in the state of Arkansas a DWI conviction stays on a person’s record for five years. He said this is why despite Fielding’s prior convictions she was allowed to drive.
“This woman apparently has gone ten to 15 years without a DWI,” said Lisk.
According to Pamela Sell with Mothers Against Drunk Driving, repeat offenders are the most dangerous.
Madd.Com states, “About one-third of all drivers arrested or convicted of drunk driving are repeat offenders.”