William Gourdine has been re-sentenced to 10 years in prison.
Gourdine was convicted of driving while intoxicated during a car accident that killed Amanda Laurenson in 2004. He was originally sentenced to just one year in jail, but a Louisiana appeals court said the sentence was too lenient, and ordered the judge to re-sentence Gourdine.
Six years of the 10-year sentence was suspended. Of the remaining four years, Gourdine will actually serve a little more than two-and-a-half-years behind bars because of time already served.
From Feb. 6
William Gourdine, whose sentence after a vehicular homicide conviction was called 'extremely lenient' by the 2nd Circuit Court of Appeals, turned himself in to Caddo Parish authorities ahead of the upcoming pre-trial sentencing, according to Assistant Caddo Parish District Attorney Eddie Brossette.
In April of 2004, Gourdine was driving his SUV at a high rate of speed when he hit a car at the intersection of Blom and Crabapple in the Southern Hills neighborhood.
That accident killed 17-year-old Amanda Laurenson.
The initial trial in Judge Leon Emanuel's court shows Gourdine had a .13 blood alcohol concentration, over the legal limit of .08.
Gourdine was convicted of vehicular homicide and sentenced to eight years in jail, with seven of them suspended.
In December of last year the Appeals Court responded with heavy criticism of the Caddo Court's decision, saying it handed down an extremely lenient sentence and the Caddo Court abused it's discretion by not ordering and considering a pre-sentence investigation and not considering the defendant's prior arrests and convictions. Those include a DWI conviction in North Carolina and a DWI arrest, but no conviction in Hahnville, Louisiana.
After reviewing the sentence, at the state's request, the Appellate Court has essentially nullified the sentence and told the Caddo Court to try again.
Gourdine has remained free, but has decided to turn himself in early.
The appeals court has ordered a pre-sentence investigation to be done by mid-April, and wants Gourdine's two prior drunken-driving arrests considered in the new sentence.
Story by Sean Staggs