MILWAUKEE (WITI) — A Milwaukee County judge sentenced 23-year-old Donovan Walker-Hall on Thursday, November 21st to seven years and eight months in prison.
In court for his sentencing hearing on Thursday, Walker-Hall read a letter of apology to the woman he hit with his car on May 6th, 2013, killing her unborn baby.
"I know this letter will never replace or justify what I did," said Walker-Hall, "I can't express the sorrow or regret I feel."
After the letter was read, Judge Jeffery Wagner questioned why Walker-Hall was on the road that day in the first place, since he never had a license. Ultimately the Judge sentenced Walker-Hall to spend nearly 8 years in prison for his crimes.
"You had no right to drive. That's what makes you a danger, because you don't follow the rules," said Judge Wagner.
Walker-Hall faced a total of six charges and was convicted of three by a jury.
The criminal complaint against Walker-Hall indicates he was driving an SUV northbound on MLK when he struck another vehicle, left the roadway and drove onto the sidewalk. That’s when he struck a pregnant woman, identified as Ashley Williams.
Williams survived the crash but her unborn child did not.
The complaint indicates a surveillance camera at a nearby Milwaukee Public Library captured the entire crash sequence on video. It also says investigators downloaded the event data recorder in the SUV that Walker-Hall was driving. It showed Walker-Hall was “driving approximately 56 miles per hour just prior to the collision sequence. The speed limit in that block is 30 miles per hour.”
The complaint says investigators found Walker-Hall has “no operator’s license issued and that his current status is suspended.” It also says “Walker-Hall’s driving record reveals three convictions for Operating Without a License and ten convictions for Operating After Suspension dating back to February 4th, 2009.”
The criminal complaint indicates Walker-Hall initially left the scene of the crash. When asked why, Walker-Hall “states that he did not stay on the scene because he went to see if the lady that he hit was okay and a man who he assumed was the lady’s boyfriend had pushed him down and was threatening him.” Walker-Hall apparently then ran off and called 911 to report what he had done.
A jury on Wednesday, October 2nd found Walker-Hall guilty of three charges, including felony homicide of an unborn child via negligent operation of a vehicle, knowingly operating while suspended, causing great bodily harm (a felony), reckless driving, causing great bodily harm (a felony).
Walker-Hall was acquitted of three additional charges.