Charleston man, 85, sentenced to 1 year on felony DUI charge
An 85-year-old man will face the next year in prison after being sentenced in a Charleston County court on a felony driving under the influence charge.
Jeseph Patrick Howe of Lochaven Drive had pleaded guilty to the charge on Jan. 16, court records show.
Howe was arrested in April 2012 when his SUV crashed into a stopped motorcycle on Glenn McConnell Parkway in West Ashley, sending its rider to Medical University Hospital with multiple pelvic fractures, police said.
Howe’s blood-alcohol level that night was 0.13, police said. He was held at the Charleston County jail in lieu of a $50,000 bail.
The now 30-year-old motorcylist, John Christopher Garon, attended Friday’s hearing but did not speak. Instead, a letter written by Garon’s father was submitted to the court.
Circuit Judge Thomas Hughston said the letter spoke to the horrific impact the situation has had on Garon.
Howe addressed the court only to apologize to Garon.
“I can understand the contempt that he feels toward me,” Howe said. “I share that.”
Hughston expressed confidence that Howe wouldn’t reoffend if released from custody. And Howe did all that he could to assist Garon monetarily since the wreck, Hughston said.
Hughston said his choice of sentence wasn’t intended as retribution. Instead, he said he wanted it to serve as an example.
“Taking your liberty will in some way be a general deterrent, hopefully, to others who may find themselves in some situation like this in the future,” Hughston said before announcing the sentence.
Reach Christina Elmore at 937-5908 or at Twitter.com/celmorePC.