The attorney for a Jacksonville man convicted in a 2006 fatal wreck said he plans to appeal a Forsyth County Superior Court jury's verdict against his client.
Brushawn Perry Fletcher, 32, was found guilty Saturday of two counts of vehicular homicide, one count of driving under the influence and one count of theft by receiving motor vehicle.
Fletcher received a 15-year sentence, five of which he must serve in prison. The remainder of the sentence will be on probation and Fletcher will have to complete 250 hours of community service.
The trial, which started Oct. 27, involved the May 28, 2006, death of 31-year-old Muller Antoine.
Antoine, a passenger in a 2006 Pontiac Grand Prix driven by Fletcher, died after the vehicle struck an embankment on Jot Em Down Road near Mathis Drive in northeastern Forsyth County. The vehicle went into the air, hit a chain link fence and rolled over twice.
Fletcher's attorney, William "Bubba" Head, said Monday the appeal will be filed soon.
"Since this was his best friend in the car, nobody wins in this case ever," Head said. "Nobody wins like that.
"We had a very good group of people as jurors and they struggled with this for about four or five hours. And I understand it's a tough, tough case. It's just always hard to have to deal with a case of this nature."
Forsyth County Chief Assistant District Attorney Sandra Partridge said she was pleased with the jury's decision.
"It was a tragic case in that Mr. Fletcher never intended to hurt anyone," she said. "The least of which his best friend.
"It is the type of case that can happen to anyone who chooses to get behind the wheel under the influence of alcohol."
Authorities said neither man was wearing a seat belt and the Pontiac was reported stolen from Gwinnett County.
Emergency medical personnel reported Muller was dead and Fletcher was outside of the car when they arrived.
Testimony presented in court Friday revealed that Fletcher's blood alcohol level, taken within three hours after the wreck, registered .14. The legal limit in Georgia is .08.
Partridge said the situation is sad, but the verdict is justice.
"Alcohol is what did this," she said. "Drunk driving is just murder on our roads."