GEORGETOWN — A Georgetown man was sentenced Monday to 25 years in prison in the death of a 22-year-old wrestler who was killed in a drunken-driving crash more than a year ago.
Carl Lewis, 60, was sentenced to 20 years in prison for first-degree manslaughter and five years for wanton endangerment. The sentences are to run consecutively for a total of 25 years, Scott Circuit Judge Rob Johnson said.
Glen Bussell, 22, a wrestler known as "Ice Pick" with the Southern Wrestling Association and assistant manager of the Habitat for Humanity ReStore in Georgetown, was killed in the April 3, 2010, crash. Georgetown police said a vehicle driven by Lewis, who was under the influence, crossed the center line on U.S. 460 and hit three other vehicles, including Bussell's.
Lewis initially was indicted on a charge of murder and four counts of wanton endangerment for the people in the other vehicles. The other drivers survived, said Assistant Commonwealth's Attorney Lee Greenup.
As part of a plea agreement accepted by Bussell's family, the murder charge was amended to manslaughter, and the four counts of wanton endangerment were consolidated into one, Green up said.
Lewis was not eligible for probation because the manslaughter count is considered a violent offense under state law. He must serve at least 181/2 years before he is eligible for parole.
"That's basically a life sentence," said defense attorney H. Wayne Roberts.
Lewis expressed remorse in a brief comment to the judge.
"I'm very sorry. I didn't intend to hurt nobody," Lewis said.
Bussell's sister, Teresia Bussell Howerton, spoke through tears in open court about the effects of her brother's death.
In a sad irony, Howerton said her brother often would act as the designated driver for people too impaired to drive.
"We'll never be able to hear him say 'I love you,' or watch him grow up," she said. "He was the heart of our family."
In the wake of the crash, Bussell's family created a non-profit organization called Glen's Angels. It is dedicated to raising the awareness of the dangers of impaired driving and pushes for stiffer sentences for offenders.
As for Lewis' actions, Howerton said, "There's no excuse for it. There's no excuse for what happened."
The judge agreed in his closing remarks before sentencing.
"Mr. Lewis, you did not have to be on that road intoxicated," Johnson said. "This is not a case where your intent has much to do with it. This wasn't an emergency where you had to be on the road."
For that reason, Johnson said he chose to make the sentences consecutive.