By BRIAN BOHNERT
FOR THE COURIER
A Fostoria man, sentenced to 12 months in prison after his truck struck and fatally injured a 9-year-old boy in 2012, will appear before a judge next week to request an early release.
George R. Tucker, 74, will appear for a judicial release hearing at 9 a.m. Wednesday in Seneca County Common Pleas Court, Tiffin, a court representative said.
Judge Michael Kelbley sentenced Tucker to one year in prison on Sept. 18 on a charge of aggravated vehicular homicide, a third-degree felony. Tucker was driving a truck that hit Mavin K. Hamilton, 9, of Fostoria, on Nov. 15, 2012.
In addition to his prison term, Tucker was given a lifetime driver’s license suspension and is prohibited from ever owning a firearm.
Seneca County Prosecutor Derek DeVine said he has filed a written opposition to Tucker’s request.
Tucker himself filed the motion for early release, DeVine said, and cited a lack of proper medical resources at the prison.
“He’s been in four months on a (12-month) sentence so I don’t know if the judge will grant it or not. But, we’re opposed to it,” DeVine said. “Ultimately, it is up to the judge to decide.”
Hamilton was struck at about 5:30 p.m. on Columbus Avenue near the intersection of East Lytle Street and Springville Avenue. According to reports, he ran out from behind a nearby building and into the roadway, where he was hit and dragged down the road by a Dodge Dakota driven by Tucker. The boy died two days later due to his injuries.
Tucker admitted to drinking three shots of Black Velvet whiskey before the incident, and his blood alcohol level at the scene was .094, above the legal driving limit of .08.
Prosecutor DeVine sought a sentence of 54 months and a lifetime driver’s license ban.
After considering all records, statements and materials presented during the trial, Judge Kelbley said the factors in Tucker’s case were consistent with a prison sentence on the “shorter side” of the scale.
Tucker is at Belmont Correctional Institution in St. Clairsville. According to the prison’s website, there are 2,764 inmates.
He is serving a “stated prison term,” which means prison officials cannot reduce the term for any reason without the judge’s approval.
Tucker’s attorney, Dean Henry, could not be reached for comment.
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