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No Jail Time for Woman Charged in Bus Stop Death

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The woman charged with passing a school bus and killing a teenage boy at his bus stop in
Wentworth North Carolina (NC) will not spend any time in jail. Judy Stilwell pleaded guilty to the felony charge of passing a stopped school bus and causing injury or death, and Judge John Craig sentenced her to a 6-to-8-month suspended sentence, 36 months of supervised probation, one-year driver’s license suspension and a $1,000 fine.

Police reports state that the 60-year-old Stilwell was driving along Highway 770 in Stoneville in late January when she hit Nick Adkins, a sophomore at McMichael High School, as he crossed the street to get on his school bus. Witnesses said the school bus had come to a complete stop and the driver had activated the bus’ warning lights and stop arm.

Police said Stilwell’s SUV, which was traveling approximately 45 mph, knocked Adkins out of his shoes, tossing him about 75 feet down the road. The high school sophomore died at the scene. With the judge calling the accident a "parent’s worst nightmare," Craig said the worst punishment for Stilwell is her feeling of remorse and no court punishment would be worse than that.

Stilwell had no prior criminal record which evidently explains her apparently light sentencing.

William Adkins, Nick’s dad, called the sentence unfair and expressed anger that Stilwell had not apologized for her actions. "I do not feel as if my son received any type of justice whatsoever," Adkins said.

If you have been injured in an accident and need the help of a lawyer please contact our office. Our firm may be able to help you recover medical expenses and loss wages. Our injury law firm maintains a NE NC office in Elizabeth City, and our main law office is in Virginia Beach, Virginia. Four of our law firm’s injury lawyers are licensed to practice law in North Carolina, Virginia, and beyond. For over a decade we have been helping North Carolina residents, and those suffering injuries or wrongful death in NC.

Shapiro, Cooper Lewis & Appleton personal injury law firm is based in Virginia, with offices in northeast NC and Virginia Beach (VA), practicing primarily in the southeastern U.S. and handles only injury law, including car, truck, railroad, and medical negligence cases and more. The firm’s website is: hsinjurylaw.com, the firm edits three injury law blogs: Virginia Beach Injuryboard & Norfolk Injuryboard, as well as the Northeast North Carolina Injuryboard and also hosts a video library covering many FAQ’s on personal injury subjects. The lawyers are licensed in VA, NC, WV, DC, SC, and KY.