SPRINGFIELD, Mo. — Two families got their day in court seven years after their loved ones were killed in a drunk driving crash.
The crash happened just days before Christmas in 2016. Dustin Emmett died at the site of the crash, and Nick Thomas died at Mercy Hospital in Springfield. Police said Corina Stockstill was drunk with a blood alcohol content between .088 and .113 percent at the time of the crash.
“I’ve seen a lot of things, some pretty ugly things in our community,” Judge Jerry Harmison said. “But in terms of the dynamics of the case, this is probably the hardest decision that I’ve had to make in the past year.”
The state asked for a 10-year prison sentence and the defense asked for probation. The maximum sentence for involuntary manslaughter is 15 years.
“I understand the of the arguments from both tables,” Harmison said. “I understand the state’s position, about the loss of life. If there is anything magical about this black outfit, I would change that day for everyone’s benefit.”
Stockstill was taken out of the courtroom in handcuffs today after Harmison sentenced her to five years in prison. Both counts will run concurrently. The families of Thomas and Emmett shared statements and asked for the maximum sentence for Stockstill.
“You never get over the death of a child,” Thomas’ mom, Paulette Thomas said. “Parents are not supposed to bury their children. Children are supposed to bury parents. [Thomas’] children are all adults now, has two grandchildren. Children grow up with no memory of their grandfather, never get to play with them.”
The defense asked for an appeal bond, but the judge denied that request.