2006.11.16: November 16, 2006: Headlines: COS - Ecuador: Obituaries: Crime: Alcoholism: The Palm Beach Post: Drunk Driver Anne Wall Cheron gets 6 years for killing Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Philip E. Myers

Peace Corps Online: Directory: Ecuador: Peace Corps Ecuador : The Peace Corps in Ecuador: 2006.06.03: June 3, 2006: Headlines: COS - Ecuador: Obituaries: Palm Beach Post: Ecuador RPCV Philip E. Myers dies : 2006.11.16: November 16, 2006: Headlines: COS - Ecuador: Obituaries: Crime: Alcoholism: The Palm Beach Post: Drunk Driver Anne Wall Cheron gets 6 years for killing Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Philip E. Myers

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Drunk Driver Anne Wall Cheron gets 6 years for killing Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Philip E. Myers

Drunk Driver Anne Wall Cheron gets 6 years for killing Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Philip E. Myers

The 41-year-old biologist, former Peace Corps member and bicyclist in recent years had cultivated his love of cooking and developed intricate recipes he followed meticulously. His family dreads the thought of Thanksgiving without him this year, Myers' sister, Paula Myers Burns, told a judge on Thursday. For that, and because Myers' death left a void in so many lives, Anne Wall Cheron, 56, of Hobe Sound should have been sentenced to the maximum 15 years in prison for driving drunk and killing Myers as he rode his bicycle near Jonathan Dickinson State Park on a Sunday morning in April, Burns and others said. But Martin Circuit Judge Robert Belanger, who said it was the toughest sentence he has pronounced in his nearly two years on the bench, instead gave Cheron six years in prison and nine years of probation. Belanger called the case one of the most aggravated instances of DUI manslaughter he had ever seen and reviewed the facts of that morning, saying that Cheron's blood-alcohol level was nearly three times the level at which a driver can be legally presumed drunk when she hit Myers and then left the scene. "She left him there alone to die," he said of Cheron. "That may not have been her intention, but that's what she did." The Thursday afternoon hearing brought out dozens of supporters for Myers, who tried as best they could to encapsulate the man's rich life in letters, stories and pictures for the judge. They talked about his successes in ridding area parks, including Jonathan Dickinson, where he worked for the last six years of his life, of exotic plant species. They talked about his cycling trip through the French Alps and his work in Ecuador with the Peace Corps, which produced a close-knit group of friends who travelled across the country for the hearing to say how much they missed him.

Drunk Driver Anne Wall Cheron gets 6 years for killing Returned Peace Corps Volunteer Philip E. Myers

Driver gets 6 years for killing bicyclist

By Daphne Duret

Palm Beach Post Staff Writer

Friday, November 17, 2006

STUART Thanksgiving was Philip Myers' favorite holiday, his family and friends said.

The 41-year-old biologist, former Peace Corps member and bicyclist in recent years had cultivated his love of cooking and developed intricate recipes he followed meticulously. His family dreads the thought of Thanksgiving without him this year, Myers' sister, Paula Myers Burns, told a judge on Thursday.

For that, and because Myers' death left a void in so many lives, Anne Wall Cheron, 56, of Hobe Sound should have been sentenced to the maximum 15 years in prison for driving drunk and killing Myers as he rode his bicycle near Jonathan Dickinson State Park on a Sunday morning in April, Burns and others said.

But Martin Circuit Judge Robert Belanger, who said it was the toughest sentence he has pronounced in his nearly two years on the bench, instead gave Cheron six years in prison and nine years of probation.

Belanger called the case one of the most aggravated instances of DUI manslaughter he had ever seen and reviewed the facts of that morning, saying that Cheron's blood-alcohol level was nearly three times the level at which a driver can be legally presumed drunk when she hit Myers and then left the scene.

"She left him there alone to die," he said of Cheron. "That may not have been her intention, but that's what she did."

The Thursday afternoon hearing brought out dozens of supporters for Myers, who tried as best they could to encapsulate the man's rich life in letters, stories and pictures for the judge.

They talked about his successes in ridding area parks, including Jonathan Dickinson, where he worked for the last six years of his life, of exotic plant species. They talked about his cycling trip through the French Alps and his work in Ecuador with the Peace Corps, which produced a close-knit group of friends who travelled across the country for the hearing to say how much they missed him.

One friend, Teresa Heger, who traveled from San Jose, wiped tears from her eyes as she remembered a trip she took with Myers in Europe a few years ago. The weather was unbearably hot and the ride ridiculously long, she said, but Phil's presence made it one of the happiest days of her life.

Cheron's family and friends from church also showed up and told Belanger the first-grade teacher, though she battled with alcoholism, was a kind person who never would have hurt anyone intentionally. Her attorney, Michelle Suskauer, said Cheron was her daughter's teacher at the Benjamin School in Palm Beach County and was a brilliant educator.

Cheron cried for most of the hearing, then turned and faced Myers' family and told them she sincerely did not know she had hit Myers that morning.

"Nothing can assuage my horror at taking an innocent man's life," she said.

As part of her sentence, Cheron will also have to pay about $9,000 restitution and her license will be permanently revoked. Myers' family and friends were disappointed with the sentence, they said afterwards, but said there is nothing Cheron could do to help their pain.

"Not unless she can raise the dead," one friend said as she left the courthouse.




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Headlines: November, 2006; COS - Ecuador; Obituaries; Crime; Alcoholism; Florida





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Story Source: The Palm Beach Post

This story has been posted in the following forums: : Headlines; COS - Ecuador; Obituaries; Crime; Alcoholism

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