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Mom of teen hit-and-run victim worries punishment won't fit crime

Posted November 26, 2012

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— The mother of a 15-year-old boy killed six months ago in a hit and run says she is worried that the punishment for the man who police say is responsible might not fit the crime.

Cody Flowers, 15, was returning home from a friend's house in Norlina on May 19, when a vehicle traveling southbound on U.S. Highway 1 crossed the center lane, struck him and didn't stop.

Flowers suffered several skull fractures and a broken right arm in the crash and was in a medically induced coma at Duke University Hospital in Durham for three days before dying.

Corey Champion, 28, of Raleigh, was arrested June 4 on charges of felony hit-and-run, misdemeanor death by motor vehicle and driving with license revoked.

Flowers' mother, Susan Walker, says she believes the charge of misdemeanor death by vehicle is not enough.

"I know that I'm a mother and that I have emotions involved, but there has to be some justice," she said Monday. "A child was killed."

A conviction on the charge carries a maximum penalty of several months in prison, while a conviction on a felony hit and run charge carries a maximum sentence of about three years.

"Something needs to be said," Walker said. "I'm trying to be respectful of the law and the case, but at some point, it's wrong."

Cody Flowers Mom of teen hit-and-run victim worries punishment won't fit crime

A spokesman for the North Carolina State Highway Patrol says that to charge Champion with felony death by vehicle would require proving he was driving under the influence the night Flowers was hit. But that's impossible, since Champion wasn't arrested until more than two weeks after the crash.

Attempts Monday to reach the Warren County District Attorney's Office and Champion's attorney were unsuccessful.

Champion, whose driving record includes a 2005 conviction for reckless driving and a 2008 conviction for driving while impaired, is due in court again next week.

Walker wants to see the person convicted of her son's death get as much jail time as possible.

She says she relives the memories of what happened to her son every day.

"He was a big brother, and he was my son, and he was my best friend, and he was my confidant," Walker said.

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  • sarrahcook Nov 29, 2012

    Roxboro, N.C. — A 25-year-old Durham woman was killed Monday night when a car struck her from behind on U.S. Highway 158 outside of Roxboro.

    The driver, 18-year-old David Winstead, initially left the scene, but returned later with relatives, according to the state Highway Patrol.

    Charges against him are pending.

    Troopers said Winstead hit Eva Maria Cook while she and her sister were trying to push their broken-down car out of the road around 10:20 p.m.

    Cook's sister was not hurt.

    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~My sister was killed in a hit and run accident, don't let them let that guy off easy. The person who killed my sister was only given a speeding ticket and 100 hours of community service. If he finishes that the charge of "death by motor vehicle" will be dismissed.

  • iluvjunk Nov 27, 2012

    Mt son was killed by a hit and run driver on Aug. 26, 2011. His killer has never been caught. I am glad this family knows who did this to their child. My family will never have that satisfaction. People run when they have something to hide. An innocent person would stop to help the victim and call the rescue squad. A guilty person don't give a darn, they run and someone dies. To me when someone runs the charge should be murder instead of hit and run.

  • oleguy Nov 27, 2012

    I think if you hit and run, the pentalty should be greater, much greater

  • Das G Nov 27, 2012

    "Where does it say he wasn't allowed to drive? If he was convicted in 2008 for DWI, he most likely has his license back."

    Uh, in the article. Specifically, where it states "Corey Champion, 28, of Raleigh, was arrested June 4 on charges of felony hit-and-run, misdemeanor death by motor vehicle and driving with license revoked."

  • jbyrd Nov 27, 2012

    aknowlton1499, did you even read the piece? It clearly states he was charged with driving with a REVOKED drivers license.

    I am sure the reason he original ran is because he was drunk as a skunk and probably aware of the consequences if caught that night. He gave himself time for all the alcohol and only God knows what else was in his system at that time.

    IMHO, his prior records SHOULD be used in deciding his fate which SHOULD include many years in prison.

  • topfan4unc Nov 27, 2012

    Bob3425 .......hit and run with injuries is a felony and the article states he was charged with that.

    However, the death is a misdemeanor by statute unless they could prove drunk driving or more. That is the part that you wish you could change to something stronger.

  • kikinc Nov 27, 2012

    "I beg to differ. This man already has a record of DWI and reckless driving. He knew he was not allowed to drive, so at some point he had to weigh the pros and cons of getting behind the wheel again."

    Where does it say he wasn't allowed to drive? If he was convicted in 2008 for DWI, he most likely has his license back.

  • charmcclainlovesdogs2 Nov 27, 2012

    Allow the law to do its job.

  • Bob3425 Nov 27, 2012

    Think what they need to do, it make hit and run a Felony by itself. Accident happen but when you run there is more to the story.

  • justjean Nov 27, 2012

    Hey if Larry Womble can get away with it, everyone else should be able to as well. What's good for one is good for all...right Larry? Sorry for this mother's loss. Our judicial system is a joke.

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