Ottawa County Common Pleas Court Judge Bruce Winters did the right thing in requiring Terri Camp prove she can remain sober for three years before the court will even consider reinstating her driving privileges, says Jane Miller, the mother of a 14-year-old boy who died from injuries in a 1993 car accident Camp caused.
Judge Winters ruled Camp, of Woodville, shall be monitored by the court’s adult probation department and participate in its random drug and alcohol testing program; with testing to be conducted at least once a week. She’ll be required to wear an ankle monitor during the initial phase of observation and will be responsible for monitoring and testing costs.
The judge set a hearing date for May 17, 2013 at 9 a.m. to consider Camp’s motion for reinstating her driving privileges.
“I think Judge Winter’s decision was extremely fair,” Miller said last week. “We asked for eight years, he gave us three. I asked for proof and he definitely is making her show that proof. I think if she is truly drug and alcohol free as she states she should not have any problems complying with these rules. Although she seems to think she is beyond the rules as it was proven that she drove on a suspended license. So we shall see what this outcome brings. If she can comply with all that is asked of her, then we need to re-evaluate our thoughts at that time.”
Judge Winters wrote that Camp has shown evidence of rehabilitation and ”…if her testimony is to be believed, has done nearly everything which might best ensure her continued sobriety” but the court believes “additional evidence is warranted.”
Her attorney, William Hayes, said Camp believes she received a fair hearing.
“I have complete confidence that Terri has been sober for the last 17 years and that it would have been appropriate to return at this time, at least some of her driving privileges,” he said. “We understand that we are asking the court to modify a prior court’s order and the court has every right to require additional proof of Terri’s sobriety.
“Terri feels that these requirements will provide her with the opportunity to prove to the court and the community that her on-going recovery is successful. She feels that she received a very fair hearing and will comply with all the requirements of the court.”
Camp was convicted in 1993 of aggravated vehicular homicide committed while driving drunk. She served 10 years of a four to 10-year sentence that also permanently revoked her driver’s license.
Ohio law allows motorists who’ve had their licenses suspended for life to file a motion with the sentencing court to modify or end the suspension after 15 years if certain requirements are met, including:
• The person hasn’t been found guilty of any felony or any offense involving a moving violation.
• The person has proof of financial responsibility.
• If the suspension was imposed because the driver was under the influence of alcohol or drugs, he or she must complete an alcohol or drug treatment program and not have been found guilty of drug or alcohol related offenses.
Camp’s motion says she has participated in a 12-step program and completed the Healing, Encouraging, Abstinence, and Recovery Through Sobriety (HEARTS) program.
She is employed in an optician’s office and has married.
If the court does reinstate Camp’s driving privileges, Miller said she’ll push for requiring her to have more than the minimum amount of insurance coverage.
Apart from the emotional burden, the accident has also been a financial burden for her family, she said.
“I don’t want another family to have to deal with another loss and then have a financial burden on top of that,” Miller said.