A Woman Enters A No Contest Plea For An Accident That Killed Two Teenagers In 2018

Whenever someone is charged with a crime, they usually enter a plea of guilty or not guilty, and there is a trial.  However, in some cases, where there is enough evidence for prosecutors to convict a case, a defendant will enter a plea of no contest.  With such a plea, the defendant is not admitting to guilt or claiming evidence but chooses not to go through a more lengthy trial process.

The Miami Herald reports that may have been what happened when a woman who was responsible for the deaths of two teens in 2018 in Pennsylvania has pleaded no contest to the charges of involuntary manslaughter and reckless endangerment. 

Debra Slaymaker-Walker, 64, appeared in court in Lancaster County on Tuesday, where she entered her plea of no contest.

According to documents filed with the court, prosecutors allege that in October of 2018, Slaymaker-Walker was driving over 70 miles per hour when collided with several vehicles in Warwick Township. The collision killed 17-year-old Meghan Keeney, 16-year-old Jack Nicholson, and seriously injured a third student. All three were students of Warwick High School. 

The initial charge against the defendant was third-degree murder.  Slaymaker-Walker’s attorneys, however, claim that she suffered an epileptic seizure, which caused the fatal crash.  The judge in the case sentenced her to 10 years of probation

The surviving family members of Nicholson and Keeney say that they were not consulted about the plea agreement before the court appearance on Tuesday.  Both families expressed frustration and disappointment that the case would not be going to trial.