The lives of two teenagers were shattered when they were involved in a car accident. The 14-year-old girl died of the injuries she suffered from, and her 15-year-old boyfriend suffered from life-altering injuries. The girl’s mother was given a two-and-a half-year sentence as a result. No one meant for it to happen, but it was a totally preventable car accident.
The teenagers were in the car, innocent kids who just needed a ride home. Samantha Vinc was the girl’s name, and she attended Bohemia Manor High School as a freshman. She was a popular student with a promising future in front of her. Dustin Bartow was a promising student at the same school. He was a sophomore who was active in school sports. His injuries have left him unable to perform the slightest of tasks and is wheelchair bound.
Dustin has undergone several surgeries to date. It is reported that he will continue to need surgeries throughout his lifespan. The paramedics found the two teens trapped in the backseat of the vehicle that was driven by Sherri Vinc, the girl’s mother. Emergency workers were forced to cut off the rear passenger door in order to reach the teens who were unconscious. Samantha died at the hospital four days later. Sherri Vinc sustained minor injuries.
Sherri Vinc pled guilty after being charged with several crimes. The first thing was that she was driving while intoxicated with a BAC of .10. The second offense was texting while driving. Police reported that Ms. Vinc was “playfully texting” back and forth with a friend that she had been drinking with at a local bar. There were mentions of the drinking in the texts.
Vinc lost control of the car; it careened off the road and into a tree. The result of the accident left the school, the town of Chesapeake, and the entire county of Cecil in shock. FaceBook posts ran wild with the news of the two teenagers asking for prayer support. The school’s football games were dedicated to them, and students gathered to share their favorite memories of the two.
Police arrested Vinc, leaving her other daughter without a mother to take care of her. This accident was more than preventable. It should not have occurred. Driving drunk and texting while driving kills people. It destroys and changes lives. Those lives should never, ever be the children we are charged with keeping safe. Adults, you are not cool when you drink and drive. You are irresponsible. You are even more irresponsible if you take people along on your death ride.
There were many responses to the sentencing this woman got for the accident. Some people say it was not enough time. Others say it is sad that she got any time because she lost her daughter, and that should be punishment enough. I say it is sad. I say the real sentence for this woman is the fact that her daughter died as a result of her own selfish and childish behavior. No amount of jail time will take that away from her; however, the jail sentence was also necessary.
There must be a message that this type of behavior is not okay. It is a message to kids that if their parents act in a criminally irresponsible way in regards to their safety, the parent will pay a price. When all is said and done, may Sherri Vinc find the peace of forgiveness from those who were hurt as a result of this accident.