Man sentenced for crash that paralyzed woman

Thursday, April 25, 2013 2:39 PM
Last updated 9:54 PM
  • Follow Crime & courts

Bert Maxwell will spend every day for the next 20 years in prison, but the woman paralyzed because of his conduct will be in a wheelchair for the rest of her life.

Bert Maxwell was fleeing police when he collided into Jenny Royal's vehicle. Royal's back was broken, paralyzing her.  SPECIAL
Bert Maxwell was fleeing police when he collided into Jenny Royal's vehicle. Royal's back was broken, paralyzing her.

Judge Michael N. Annis said Maxwell, 29, made a positive step Thursday when he took responsibility and pleaded guilty. Annis sentenced Maxwell for causing serious injury by vehicle, fleeing or attempting to elude a police officer and nine misdemeanor driving offenses.

In a letter later given to the victim, Jenny Royal, Max­well apologized and begged forgiveness. “I hate myself,” he wrote.

Because of three prior felony convictions, Assistant District Attorney Justin Jones filed notice that any sentence Maxwell received must be served without the possibility of parole.

On the night of Dec. 30, 2010, a deputy pulled over Max­well’s vehicle because the tag light was out. When the officer asked for his license, Maxwell took off, heading south on the wrong side of Deans Bridge Road at speeds over 100 mph, Jones said.

Maxwell crashed head-on with Royal’s vehicle. Her back and several bones were broken.

She thought the worst of it was that she would never walk again. As bad, Royal said, was the lack of privacy and dignity to simply care for any of her personal needs.

Royal said she will never again walk the beaches as she did growing up in Florida, delighting in the feel of the surf and sand between her toes. There will never be another annual vacation in the mountains. She often begs off outings with family and friends just because she is too exhausted, Royal said.

Of all of his cases, Jones said, he cannot think of a more senseless crime, caused by trying to avoid a minor traffic charge.

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soapy_725 04/25/13 - 03:15 pm
How do we find JUSTICE in the taking of anoher's life?

And this man has taken her life. God can an will forgive. But the damage is forever. Man is incapable of mediating JUSTICE.

God bless the victim. Grant her His peace and grace.

rmwhitley 04/26/13 - 10:21 am

and prosecutors should be as judicious in all cases. God bless Mrs./Ms Royal.

nocnoc 04/26/13 - 02:50 pm
An for 20 years he will

get free room with clean sheet several times a week,
get medical attention,
get additional education or techinical training.
get cable TV,
get free HVAC for his A/C cooled or heated room.

In 5 years he'll have a lawyer petition the courts for sentence review.

If he fails, what the heck, he will not have to work a day again for 20 years for everything, that we are forced by taxes to pay for his humane prison treatment.

When he gets out he will get free job counseling and placement, and a EBT card and section 8 house or a government provided apt.

Then he'll only have to wait a 12 years and he'll get a check from social security. Sooner, if he plays the system and claims SSD.

Yep! he going have a rough time.

Mean time his victim will sit in a wheel chair wishing she could be whole again.

Darby 04/26/13 - 03:33 pm
*Sorry, but I'm having

difficulty in believing this guy's sincerity.

He probably does hate himself. But then, he probably hates everybody.

*Not really sorry. Just a figure of speech.

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