VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – A 30-year-old Virginia Beach man was sentenced Monday to serve 27 years and nine months in prison for a fatal 2014 drunk driving crash.
The accident happened near Lynnhaven Parkway and Pleasant Valley Road on January 4, 2014.
Court documents say a patrol officer attempted to pull over James William Dyson, Jr. in his Suzuki XL7 SUV after he ran a red light at Lynnhaven Parkway and Princess Anne Road.
Dyson refused to pull over and sped up in an attempt to flee from police.
As the SUV entered the intersection of Lynnhaven and Pleasant Valley Road, the SUV struck a 2005 Chrysler van, driven by 59-year-old Kelvin Spencer Bracy, who was traveling eastbound. The crash knocked the van across the median and into the northbound lane hitting a third vehicle.
Bracy died at the scene. No one in the third vehicle was hurt.
Dyson’s SUV flipped onto its roof and caught fire. Dyson was ejected from the SUV in the crash, and the two remaining passengers were pulled from the vehicle by police.
The backseat passenger in the vehicle driven by Dyson suffered a collapsed lung, broken right femur, and a closed head injury that requires ongoing treatment and rehabilitation.
Dyson’s passengers told police that they told Dyson to stop when the first officer attempted to stop him, but Dyson told them that he did not have a license and was not going back to jail.
Dyson was arrested for DUI and refusal to submit to a breath test. Dyson’s blood was later drawn at the hospital and his blood alcohol content was a .16.
Dyson has an extensive criminal history dating back to his years as a juvenile. He has multiple traffic and alcohol related offenses on his record, as well as convictions for Burglary, Grand Larceny from the Person, Hit and Run, Concealed Weapon, Possession of Firearm by Felon (Non-Violent), and Reckless Driving – Endanger Life/Limb/Property.
Dyson was charged with Second Degree Felony Murder, Eluding Police – Endangerment, DUI – Victim Permanently Impaired, Driving on a Suspended License, Refusal of Blood/Breath Test, and Failure to Wear Seatbelt.
Circuit Court Judge Stephen C. Mahan sentenced Dyson to 40 years and nine (9) months in prison with 13 years suspended, leaving 27 years and nine (9) months to serve.