Man gets 30 years for fatal DWI crash in NJ

A Philadelphia man was sentenced Friday to 30 years in prison for a fatal 2009 crash in New Jersey.

On September 12, 2009, Philadelphia native John J. Lawless, had been drinking way too much, a habit dating back over twenty years. But on this fateful night, it would cost another family the life of a loved one. Lawless was traveling north on Route 9 near Cape May when his car careened into the southbound lane and crashing into the car of the Shelton family.

The husband, Frederick Shelton, died at the scene, his wife and young daughter by his side. His wife, Sheri Shelton, suffered a few broken bones and some internal injuries, their 13-year-old daughter Brittany was also hospitalized.

It was believed to be Lawless’ 8th DWI offense over the past 20 years. According to Court Judge Raymond Batten, “This defendant is simply unwilling or unable to abide by the law…The history of DWI offenses is clear. It is excessive. It is repetitive.”

Lawless was sentenced to 30 years in prison for DWI Manslaughter.

Source: The Press of Atlantic City

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