Truck driver gets probation in accident that killed chaplain

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A dump truck driver who struck and killed a hospital chaplain this spring was sentenced today to two years probation.

Samantha Rivers, 25, of Warrenton, Ga., pleaded guilty to making an improper turn, and she pleaded no contest to vehicular homicide in the second degree, said her attorney Pete Theodocion.

Richmond County State Court Judge David D. Watkins accepted the plea negotiation for the straight probation sentence, Mr. Theodocion said.

Ms. Rivers struck and killed Bill Snyder, 67, on April 28, on Jones Street near the end of River Watch Parkway. Mr. Snyder, who was a North Augusta minister and University Hospital chaplain, was driving his moped at the time of the accident.

“She just never saw him,” Mr. Theodocion said of his client. She feels terrible about what happened, he said.

Judge Watkins told Ms. Rivers that he would suspend half of her $2,000 fine if she would donate that much money for a memorial for Mr. Snyder.

The accident happened about 9:40 a.m. Ms. Rivers had dropped off a load of stone for the St. Sebastian Way road project. She turned right onto Jones Street and was trying to turn left into the Circle K station when she struck Mr. Snyder, Mr. Theodocion said. He had come up beside Ms. Rivers’ truck and she couldn’t see him, her attorney said.

According to an earlier report in The Augusta Chronicle, Mr. Snyder was on his way to a veterans’ Bible study group.

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patriciathomas
42
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patriciathomas 06/09/09 - 07:35 pm
0
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While this may seem an unjust

While this may seem an unjust decision to some, the fact remains that ALL riders of two wheeled vehicles, on a road with much larger vehicles, must always be aware of the danger they are in and what caused that danger. When you're that much smaller than everything else on the road, you NEVER have the right of way. It's a technique that tends to keep you safe.

andywarhol
0
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andywarhol 06/09/09 - 07:42 pm
0
0
As a fellow biker I agree.

As a fellow biker I agree. Accidents happen everyday when people pull out in front of other cars, because they "just didn't see them." I had a man run a red and t-bone my dodge truck. Should I expect people to see my on my Harley? Heck no. Making the choice to be a biker means you accept the increase life threatening risk in doing so. If you don't like it, stay in your SUV.

humbleopinion
0
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humbleopinion 06/09/09 - 08:24 pm
0
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This happened less than six

This happened less than six weeks ago and it's already gone to court?

DontTazeMeBro
2
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DontTazeMeBro 06/09/09 - 08:49 pm
0
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yeah that was swift justice.

yeah that was swift justice. like it or not, 2-wheelers, including mopeds are legal vehicles that have just as much right to the road as a car.. and "not seeing them" does not relieve a driver of their responsibility, eh

g-dog express
0
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g-dog express 06/09/09 - 09:31 pm
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DTMB though I understand how

DTMB though I understand how you feel, you obviously have not drove a big truck very much. There are thing you just can't see just in front of the right rear wheel is one of those areas. People who drive big trucks do try to watch but if you get too close the driver cannot see you. Stay at least 10 ft away to be seen in mirrors. That is front back and sides.

RogueKnight
220
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RogueKnight 06/09/09 - 09:59 pm
0
0
I'm glad Ms. Rivers got

I'm glad Ms. Rivers got probation. Jail time would have served no purpose here. It was an accident. No willfull negligence was involved. As an avid biker myself, one of the things I make it a point to do is get out of the blind spots of ALL vehicles I am traveling with. That includes automobiles, pickups, tandem and tractor-trailer trucks. Either fall in behind them or get ahead of them, but don't stay beside them in traffic any longer than necessary. Continued prayers for comfort to Rev. Snyders family and to Ms. Rivers and her family.

Fiat_Lux
15699
Points
Fiat_Lux 06/09/09 - 11:06 pm
0
0
I'm also glad Ms. Rivers got

I'm also glad Ms. Rivers got probation. I don't think I have ever seen a sadder mug shot than hers; it was obvious how devastated she was at what had happened. And even with the pain of losing their beloved husband, father and friend, the wonderful Snyder family and their friends know this was simply an awful, tragic accident. God bless them all.

Asitisinaug
3
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Asitisinaug 06/09/09 - 11:51 pm
0
0
Accidents Happen, that is why

Accidents Happen, that is why they call them accidents. The driver didn't do anything on purpose or incidental to the accident to make it worse (such as DUI) and therefore, this punishment more than fits the crime. And, yes motorcycles, etc. do have legal rights on the road as do all others. However, I totally agree that when you get on one, you know of the added risks and they can be very difficult to see at times. A truck driver simply doing her job with no intentions at all whatsoever of killing anyone accidentaly hits the person resulting in his death. This could happen to many of us on a daily basis driving most any type of vehicle. She has been punished enough by the results of the accident, probation is more than enough punishment.

FedupwithAUG
0
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FedupwithAUG 06/10/09 - 04:10 am
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I'm glad there are some

I'm glad there are some people with some brains that responded to this article. Where are the brainless ones? Are we still in Augusta? it makes no sence.

ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts
8375
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ColdBeerBoiledPeanuts 06/10/09 - 06:27 am
0
0
Don't worry Fedup, they

Don't worry Fedup, they haven't had their daily cup of venom yet!

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