I am writing in reference to the 16-year-old Cobb County boy who is being charged with two misdemeanor counts, including second degree vehicular homicide, in connection with an April 13 accident that claimed the life of the boy’s mother.
My name is Michelle Turner, and my family has been through almost exactly the same experience as this 16-year-old.
I am begging you not to pursue charges against this boy. His life has already been drastically changed. He will forever have to live with the fact that he was driving the car on that horrific day when the accident took place. He will always feel guilty.
Unless you have personally been in the same situation, you cannot begin to understand the guilt, sorrow, anguish, depression, as well as the suicidal thoughts he will experience.
It is quite possible that he will also experience ridicule from his peers at school. He will have flashbacks of the accident and have trouble sleeping. He will be haunted by the image of personally witnessing his mother die and knowing he could do nothing to help her. It is bad enough that he had to bury his mother. The last thing he needs is to face charges. Please do not place this additional burden on this child.
My son, Chris Turner, was involved in a car accident on July 24, 2006, in Sunnyvale, Texas. My sister, Melissa Burgess, passed away in the accident. Chris had only had his drivers permit for two weeks. He made a left-hand turn at a green light and the car he was driving was hit by a truck that had just crested a hill.
Melissa, who was a like a second mother to Chris, died instantly. Chris’ life has been changed forever. To this day, he still struggles with the guilt, sorrow, anguish and depression regarding the wreck. (Thankfully, he no longer struggles with thoughts of suicide.) This is thanks, in part, to the fact that he has gone to individual as well as family counseling.
Chris didn’t drive again for almost two years; two weeks before he graduated high school, a place where he had been ostracized. It has been nearly five years now, and he still has violent flashbacks and trouble sleeping.
My heart goes out to Mr. Mosley, his son, and their entire family. There are so many struggles they have yet to face.
So please, Mr. Head, do not follow up on these charges filed by the Cobb County Police Department. Give this family the time and space they need to properly grieve. Their lives have been turned upside down over night, the last thing they need to deal with is this.