A driver in a West Boynton fatal crash three years ago pleaded guilty to DUI manslaughter and was sentenced Monday to eight years in state prison.
Instead of standing trial, Scott Walker, 46, took responsibility for the Oct. 25, 2014, death of the other motorist, Selma Scott, 98.
Palm Beach County Circuit Judge Cheryl Caracuzzo approved the plea deal, which requires that Walker serve a mandatory minimum of four years behind bars.
Walker, a Deerfield Beach stockbroker, will be put on probation for seven years after his release from prison, and have his driver’s license permanently suspended.
Defense attorney Michael D. Weinstein said Walker decided not to take the chance of leaving his fate up to a jury, and risking a possible 15-year prison term for a conviction
“It wasn’t worth seven years of my client’s life,” said Weinstein, noting that Walker just got married Sunday.
Assistant State Attorney Danielle Sheriff told the court that the victim’s family, which lives out of state, approved the plea terms.
According to an arrest report, Walker was driving west on Lake Ida Road and ran a red light. His Hyundai Genesis hit the passenger side of Scott’s Hyundai Elantra, which was heading northbound on El Claire Ranch Road.
Based on blood samples taken three hours after the crash, Walker had multiple types of drugs in his system, including cocaine, morphine and hydromorphone, a painkiller.
Deputies said Walker had slurred speech, swayed while he walked and seemed sleepy at the scene west of Boynton Beach.
Scott, who lived in a community not far from the crash, was taken to Delray Medical Center, where she later died about five hours later, records show.