A man charged with vehicular homicide after a high-speed run down a narrow, winding road that resulted in a crash and the death of his passenger in 2018 has pleaded guilty.
According to the Cherokee County District Attorney’s office:
Allen McIntire, 63, of White, entered a non-negotiated guilty plea in Cherokee County Superior Court, and was sentenced for homicide by vehicle in the first degree, driving under the influence, reckless driving, speeding, and failure to maintain lane. McIntire, who had been out of jail on bond, was taken into custody on Tuesday to begin serving his sentence in the state probation detention center.
The incident occurred on the afternoon of Jan. 10, 2018 near the Bartow County line. That day, 73-year-old Barry McMahon was riding in McIntire’s vintage Chevrolet Nova, which McIntire then drove at high speed on narrow, winding White Road. The car left the road and crashed into a tree and McMahon was killed.
The Cherokee Sheriff’s Office determined that McIntire’s car was traveling at more than 80 mph on the road, which has a 35 mph posted speed limit. McIntire had a blood alcohol level of .12, while the legal limit is .08. Tests showed he had also taken diphenhydramine, a non-prescription antihistamine, which intensifies the effects of alcohol.
During the plea hearing on Oct. 31, Assistant District Attorney David Holmes recommended a sentence of 15 years, with 10 years to be served in confinement.
“The defendant’s actions in this case were completely senseless,” Holmes said. “He chose to drive in an extremely impaired state and his actions caused the needless death of a man who was much loved by family and friends.”
Seven members of McMahon’s family provided victim impact statements to the court. They described him as a generous, trusted family member who is deeply missed.
Judge David Cannon Jr. sentenced McIntire to 10 years of probation with the first 90-120 days to be served in a state probation detention center. Additional conditions of his sentence include completing 240 hours of community service, a DUI risk reduction program, the Mothers Against Drunk Driving victim impact panel, suspension of his driver’s license, no alcohol or illegal drug use, and no contact with the victim’s family.
“A man of Mr. McIntire’s age should be well aware of the dangers of drinking and driving. His actions are indefensible. He consumed alcohol while taking an antihistamine, invited a friend to take a ride with him in a 600-horsepower muscle car, and then drove at a high rate of speed on a narrow country road,” said District Attorney Shannon Wallace. “Alcohol impairs judgment, motor coordination, and reaction speed. Had Mr. McIntire not been drinking and driving, this tragedy would likely have never occurred.”