Man who hit teacher in 2014 drunk driving crash sent to jail for reckless driving, resisting arrest.
By Allison Scarbrough, Editor.
LUDINGTON — The 29-year-old Ludington man who seriously injured a local teacher in a hit-and-run crash five years ago was ordered to serve three months up front of a one-year discretionary jail term Tuesday, May 14, in 51st Circuit Court for pulling the keys out of the ignition of his girlfriend’s car and resisting arrest last January.
Brian Keith Blackburn, of 904 N. Emily St., pleaded guilty to a felony of assaulting/resisting/obstructing police and a misdemeanor of reckless driving, along with a third-offense habitual offender designation.
“Mr. Blackburn, in his intoxicated state, decided to turn off the engine in front of Walmart, putting himself and any other person on the roads that day in extreme danger,” said Mason County Prosecutor Paul Spaniola.
One misdemeanor count of domestic violence and a fourth-offense habitual offender designation were dismissed.
Blackburn was released from prison last October after serving a 2.5-5 year prison term for convictions of operating a vehicle while intoxicated causing incapacitating injury; failure to stop at a personal injury accident causing serious injury; and assaulting/resisting/obstructing a police officer. Blackburn drove through the Shop-N-Save parking lot in Pere Marquette Township while drunk and struck Scott Dumas, who was 50 years old at the time. Dumas, a teacher at Mason County Central Middle School, was seriously injured and airlifted by helicopter to a Grand Rapids hospital. He continues to suffer from the effects of the crash.
“The defendant is not back in court for sentencing in that matter,” Spaniola said, “but it was a very serious matter.” His behavior shows a “disregard for other individuals,” he added.
“He was abusive to his significant other while driving in a blizzard,” Spaniola said of Blackburn’s current case.
Blackburn has a full-time job and is a hard worker, said his attorney Becky Lederer. “Obviously, it is apparent he does still struggle with the use of alcohol. He attends AA regularly.”
“I understand that I have had an issue with alcohol but I’m still fighting with it,” Blackburn said. “I have three months and two weeks of sobriety under my belt. After this case, it was a real wake up call. The other case was a wake up call, too.”
Blackburn said he will continue with his sobriety and continue attending Alcoholics Anonymous whether the court orders it or not. “I f—ed up, excuse my language, but I did.”
The Michigan Secretary of State will suspend Blackburn’s driver’s license, Spaniola said.
Blackburn resisted officers at the Mason County Jail after he was booked in, said Judge Susan K. Sniegowski, who also ordered two years probation. He received credit for seven days served in jail.
For the reckless driving conviction, Blackburn was sentenced to a concurrent term of 90 days in jail.
Sentencing guidelines in the case are 0-25 months.
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