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Regional & National

Jury convicts man involved in accident that killed Wellmont paramedic

December 17th, 2009 12:00 am by Staff Report

According to the Bristol Herald Courier,  a Washington County Circuit Court jury has found Michael Gardner guilty of aggravated involuntary manslaughter, driving with a blood alcohol content of more than .20 percent and driving on a revoked or suspended license.

The Coeburn, Va. resident's guilt was settled after 34 minutes of jury deliberation in the case of a head-on I-81  wreck that killed Johnny  Morphew, 48.

Morphew  was a Bristol, Va., firefighter and medical flight paramedic for Wellmont Health System. He was driving from his home in Chilhowie, Va., to work in Greeneville, Tenn., when the fatal crash occurred.

The jury prescribed the maximum sentence of 22 years. Broken down, the sentence includes 20 years for aggravated involuntary manslaughter and 12-month sentences for each of the other two charges.

A formal sentencing will take place next year.

Read the full report at .

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