Prison mandatory for driver in felony DUI |

Prison mandatory for driver in felony DUI

by Sheila Gardner

A 21-year-old Fish Springs man faces up to five years in Nevada State Prison after he pleaded guilty to drunk driving causing substantial bodily harm.

In a plea agreement with the district attorney’s office, Michael Hartman pleaded guilty Monday to driving under the influence of intoxicating liquor causing substantial bodily harm.

Hartman is ineligible for probation, and the sentence carries up to a 20-year sentence and $5,000 fine.

In exchange for his guilty plea, the state agreed to recommend 2-5 years and drop a charge of reckless driving stemming from the July 24 accident which seriously injured Sally Watters, 56.

District Judge Michael Gibbons set sentencing for Dec. 19. Hartman is in Douglas County Jail on $25,000 bail.

According to reports, Hartman allegedly ran a stop sign at 58 mph at the intersection of Rocky Terrace and Centerville Lane at 7:32 a.m.

His Toyota Tacoma collided with a Chevrolet Trailblazer driven by Watters, who was pulling out of her driveway.

According to court documents, Watters’ injuries included a fractured hand which required surgery and the installation of pins, fractured neck vertebra, lower spinal fracture, blood clot in her ankle and other soft tissue injuries.

Prosecutor Laurie Trotter said Monday the last time she spoke with Watters, the victim remained bedridden and unable to work.

A passenger in Hartman’s vehicle the day of the accident said he and the defendant were coming from a Gardnerville address where they had been drinking whiskey. Two empty bottles of Black Velvet were found in the vehicle, according to reports.

Hartman’s blood-alcohol content reportedly was .170, more than twice the legal limit of .08 for driving.

“I cannot remember anything about the accident,” Hartman said Monday. “The first thing I remember is coming to in the (CareFlight) helicopter.”

He said he didn’t remember his passenger telling him to slow down.

Hartman was arrested Oct. 16 at Lampe Park when a driver’s license check revealed he was the subject of two felony warrants in connection with the accident.