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Lansing Man Pleads No Contest in Drunk Driving Accident That Killed Mother, Son

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Mason, MI—Daniel Burwell pleaded no contest to drunk driving charges after he ran through a red light at 60 mph last year, killing a mother and her son. The 28-year-old man appeared in Ingham County Circuit Court last Friday and will serve a minimum of 15 years in prison as part of his agreement with the prosecutors.

The crash occurred on April 20, 2009 at the intersection of South Pennsylvania Avenue and Cavanaugh Road. Sylvia Porter, age 46, and her son, Major Washington Junior, age 17, were struck and killed by Burwell’s pickup truck and died at the scene. According to court testimony, Burwell fled the scene. When police found him, he claimed that someone else was driving at the time of the accident and that he was only a passenger. However, three hours after the accident, Burwell’s blood-alcohol level was still at .18—three times the legal limit.

Major Washington Senior and his friend, Chris Daniels, were the only spectators in the courtroom on Friday. However, Major doesn’t wish Burwell any ill-will but hopes that he will receive an apology one day.