Valdosta Daily Times

Local News

January 25, 2014

Man pleads guilty to vehicular homicide

Faces sentencing for accident that killed Lake Park woman

VALDOSTA — The man charged in the death of a Lake Park woman who died when the vehicle he was driving crashed into a ditch while he was reportedly driving under the influence pled guilty Friday to three of the multiple charges he faced in the case.

Johnnie Dee Moore, 24, pled guilty to vehicular homicide in the first degree, serious injury by motor vehicle and reckless driving. Moore was the driver of the pickup truck which wrecked on Twin Lakes Road during the early morning hours of July 13, 2012.

Moore faces sentencing on March 7, 2014.

Victoria Hanson, 41, of Lake Park, died as a result of the crash, and Karen Beck, 45, sustained serious injuries. Hanson and Beck were not using safety restraints and were ejected through the back of the truck during the accident. Moore was arrested following the crash along with Julie Troyer, an assistant Valdosta State University professor and front-seat passenger.

During the investigation of the accident, Moore stated to Georgia State Patrol troopers that he had pulled Hanson out from under the truck after the accident to check if she was still breathing. He then called a friend to take the injured women to an EMS station. He also concealed the truck’s license plate behind a back seat, hid the women’s purses in the woods and then fled, according to reports.

Moore originally faced additional charges of tampering with evidence, failure to report an accident, possession of marijuana, driving under the influence and causing a serious accident while under the influence, according to reports.

Hanson’s mother, Sherill Perry, was disappointed with Moore’s guilty plea.

“I wanted him to go through all the charges, and now he could get a lighter sentence from the judge,” said Perry. “I am very, very disappointed.”

Perry has been following the case closely, and now that Moore has entered guilty pleas, her attention has turned to the VSU professor who, according to reports, said she barely knew the truck’s other three passengers. Moore’s father later identified Troyer as his son’s girlfriend.

Troyer reportedly contacted a friend to help in the aftermath of the wreck, according to a Special Collision Reconstruction Team trooper with the GSP.

“My daughter was in excruciating pain, but Troyer waited to call 911,” said Perry.

Troyer was charged with possession of marijuana, and giving a false statement, according to reports. Troopers searched Troyer’s residence for Moore after the accident and reportedly found small amounts of marijuana on the kitchen counter. After turning himself in several hours after the accident, Moore stated that the marijuana was his, reports stated.

Motions are pending in the court in Troyer’s case, and a trial date has not been scheduled.

“I want to try to forgive him. He’s just a young man,” said Perry, “But this is murder.”

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