A Boone County judge has sentenced a convicted drunk driver to six years in jail after he was found guilty of causing a serious crash that left an innocent driver paralyzed from the neck down. The sentenced driver, Ryann S. Early, 36, of Whitestown, was sentenced on February 9 to six years in the Indiana Department of Corrections followed by another four years of probation.
According to court documents, Early was accused of crossing the center line and colliding head-on with a Honda Accord on October 18, 2020, while driving on East County Road 400 South near Whitestown. The collision resulted in significant injuries to the driver of the Honda Accord, who is now paralyzed from the neck down and requires assistance for all self-care activities and mobility.
Investigations revealed that Early was driving 79 miles per hour in a posted 40 miles per hour zone and was attempting to pass another vehicle, despite a double yellow line, at the time of the crash. A blood draw of Early revealed that he had a blood alcohol level of .142, one and a half times the legal limit.
In November, Early was found guilty of seven different counts related to the drunk driving crash, including two counts of causing catastrophic injury when operating a vehicle while intoxicated, both Level 4 felonies.
The Boone County Prosecutor’s Office has stated that impaired driving continues to be a significant public safety issue in the community and the country. Drunk driving is the number one filed and litigated case in Boone County, with impaired drivers killing over 10,000 people a year in the United States.In recent years, Indiana has seen an increase in impaired driving deaths.
Boone County Prosecutor Ken T. Eastwood commented on the sentence by saying, “This case is a sad example of how drunk driving cases can adversely impact countless lives. What is even worse is that this case and others like it are completely preventable and should never happen.” He went on to say, “Impaired driving continues to be a significant public safety issue in our community and country.
Drunk Driving is the number one filed and litigated case in Boone County. Impaired drivers continue to kill over 10,000 people a year in our country, and the past year Indiana has seen an increase in impaired driving deaths.”
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