Three years ago, 89-year-old George Russell Weller, mistook the gas for the brake and plowed through the crowded Santa Monica Farmer's Market, killing ten people.
He's up for trial this week on ten charges of manslaughter, which, if convicted, could get him 18 years behind bars. That will make him 107 by the time he gets out.
Actually, no. Let's be honest here. He'll make it two days before getting shivved in the shower room. Old people and prison do not mix well.
The question in the trial is whether this is a crime or the grand-daddy of all senior moments. He's also being hammered by civil wrongful death suits.
Personally, I think he'll get off. The man's 89-freakin' years old. At that age, prison is a death sentence, and I suspect the court will look at it that way. As long as he doesn't come across as an angry, "Mr. Wilson" curmudgeon.
Oh, wait, that's the prosecution's argument.
[Deputy District Attorney Ann] Ambrose said two witnesses will testify that after Weller's car stopped, he said: "If you saw me coming, you should have gotten out of my way."Next thing you know they'll pull in folks who saw him shake his fist at them and told them to get off his lawn. Dammit.