Woman gets 25 years in prison for crash that killed UGA grad student


A North Georgia woman was sentenced to 25 years in prison for a DUI crash that killed a University of Georgia graduate student and injured two other cyclists, court records show.

Whitney Baker Howard, 32, of Madison County, will be on probation for six years after her prison term ends, according to the sentence handed down Wednesday in Athens-Clarke County Superior Court.

Howard was convicted in October of two counts of vehicular homicide, DUI drugs and other charges in a September 2016 crash that killed 25-year-old Ashley Block, authorities said. The cyclists were on a group ride at the time of the crash, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution previously reported.

MORE: Woman convicted in crash that killed UGA grad student

Howard was under the influence of what were believed to be prescription medications, police said. Her 2-year-old daughter was in the car at the time of the crash.

She also was convicted of six counts of serious injury by vehicle, improper lane change and child endangerment.

Howard also was charged with DUI in June and August of 2016, the Athens Banner-Herald reported. Because DUI is a misdemeanor in Georgia, judges in those cases had to grant her bond.

Know what’s really going on with crime and public safety in your metro Atlanta community, including breaking news, trial coverage, trends and the latest on unsolved cases. Sign up for the AJC’s crime and safety newsletter delivered weekly to your inbox.

In other news:



Next Up in Local

Peace be with you, but no touching: Flu season alters mass in this state
Peace be with you, but no touching: Flu season alters mass in this state

Widespread influenza across Maine has prompted the Roman Catholic Diocese of Portland to alter some traditions to keep parishioners healthy. The diocese announced Thursday that it's suspending the sharing of consecrated wine during communion and holding hands during the Lord's Prayer. The diocese is also discouraging parishioners from shaking hands...
Tractor-trailer carrying furniture hit, split in half by train in Gwinnett County
Tractor-trailer carrying furniture hit, split in half by train in Gwinnett County

A Norfolk Southern train hit a tractor-trailer that was stuck on railroad tracks in Norcross, Gwinnett County fire officials said.  The driver was out of the truck when the vehicle was hit Friday evening at the intersection of Thrasher Street and Holcomb Bridge Road.  Crews arrived to the scene and found the truck, which was carrying furniture...
Man found with cocaine charged with leaving friend pinned under car
Man found with cocaine charged with leaving friend pinned under car

For 10 minutes, Samuel Lloyd was pinned under his car outside a Clayton County home just after midnight last week. But police don’t know how he got there.  “His injuries were consistent with being run over,” Clayton County police Sgt. Ashanti Marbury said, “but at the time, officers could (not) confirm who caused the vehicle...
Wedding was called off, so groom’s mom went to sell ring and someone stole it
Wedding was called off, so groom’s mom went to sell ring and someone stole it

A Cobb County woman has become the latest victim of a crime that began by arranging to buy or sell something online. Lured by a man on the 5miles app, the woman wanted to sell her son’s wedding ring after the event was called off, Channel 2 Action News reported. So she agreed to meet the man in front of a Boost Mobile store in a strip mall in...
Flu deaths reach 12 in Georgia as flu remains widespread
Flu deaths reach 12 in Georgia as flu remains widespread

The number of flu deaths continues to climb in Georgia as the flu outbreak remains widespread here and across the country.  Influenza activity has increased sharply in Georgia and across the United States during recent weeks, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. During the second week of the year, which runs from Jan....
More Stories