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Woman gets 8-year sentence in Stafford County crash that killed her friend
By KEITH EPPS
A woman who accidentally killed her friend while driving intoxicated and without a license was ordered Monday to serve eight years in prison.
Amy Michelle Owens, 35, of Stafford County was going to get cigarettes late June 18 of last year when she lost control of the Mazda she was driving south on U.S. 1 in the area of the Stafford Wayside near Carnaby Street. The Mazda ended up in a ravine and Owens’ passenger, 44-year-old Sharon Elizabeth Oxley, died from injuries suffered in the crash.
Owens was sentenced in Stafford Circuit Court by Judge Michael Levy to a total of 20 years in prison with 12 years suspended.
She had previously pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter, driving while intoxicated (fourth offense) and driving while her license was revoked for DUI.
According to evidence presented by prosecutor Andrea Stewart, Owens had a large amount of Xanax in her system at the time of the accident. A witness told Trooper E.S. Frye that the Mazda passed her at a high speed about 10 that night. The car went from the left side of the road to the right shoulder, then back to the left again, where it struck a guardrail and flipped into the ravine.
Oxley was taken to a local hospital, where she died the next morning.
Stewart said that Owens’ license had been suspended prior to her first DUI in 2004 and was never reinstated. “Yet she continued driving through the years, picking up three more DUI convictions,” Stewart said.
“Obviously she never got the message that she shouldn’t be driving, especially under the influence.”
Owens made a statement Monday calling the incident the “worst night of my life.” She expressed remorse and said the death of her close friend has had a profound impact on her life.
Owens was represented by attorney Ben Woodbridge.