Tampa Bay-area man gets 17 years for fatal DUI crash

56-year-old pleads guilty to DUI manslaughter

NEW PORT RICHEY, Fla. (AP) -- A Tampa Bay-area man has been sentenced to 17 years in prison for a fatal DUI crash.

A Pasco County judge sentenced 56-year-old Thomas M. Fitzgerald on Friday after he pleaded guilty to DUI manslaughter. Fitzgerald's driver license was revoked for life.

Authorities say Fitzgerald failed to stop at an intersection and slammed his Ford Sport Trac into a Honda Accord in December 2009. The Accord was pushed into a Ford Explorer, while Fitzgerald's Sport Trac continued on and hit an Infiniti. Multiple injuries were reported in all the vehicles, but the crash killed 52-year-old James E. Kiewra, who was riding in the Accord.

Tests showed Fitzgerald had a blood alcohol level of 0.24 percent. State law considers a driver intoxicated at 0.08 percent.

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Information from: The Tampa Tribune, http://www.tampatrib.com

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