Albany woman in court over vehicular homicide charge - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Albany woman in court over vehicular homicide charge

By Jennifer Emert - bio | email

ALBANY, GA (WALB) - Additional charges of DUI child endangerment are filed against an Albany woman charged in a fatal motorcycle crash Tuesday evening.

Forty year old Melanie Woodley made her first appearance before Magistrate Judge Jim Thurmond Thursday morning. She was later released from the Lee County jail on a $5,000 bond.

Friends and Co-workers of Melanie Woodley describe her as a good, kind person, who never would have wanted this tragedy to happen. They say she was very close with her ten year old son and worry what this event will mean for both their lives.

With a tear-stained face Melanie Woodley made her first appearance in court around eleven o'clock. Her attorney offered support as Judge Jim Thurmond read the charges of homicide by vehicle, driving under the influence, two counts of DUI-child endangerment and road violations. Through sobs Woodley answered the judge with only two words.

"Yes Sir," answered Woodley.

"Truth of the matter I doubt that she's quit crying since this incident happened. She's totally devastated, not for herself, but for the family of the young man who's life was taken," said Attorney Jerry Brimberry.

Woodley had been at a friends house and told troopers there had been alcohol involved. Woodley, her 10 year old son, and on of his friends were stopping for food at Sonic. Woodley told troopers she never saw the motorcycle.

"I know she recognizes this being just a terrible tragedy that will forever change not only his family's life, but her family's life, it's just a terrible situation," said Brimberry.

Her ten year old son is staying with Woodley's mother in Albany.

"Yes, he's staying with family members and I believe he's doing okay," said Brimberry.

Woodley's body shook with tears throughout the hearing. Co-workers at Cooper Tire say they're not surprised, they believe this is the last thing Woodley ever would have wanted to happen. They say she's not a bad peron, but made a poor decision to drive.

"She worked out there for I think about nine years and was involved in the plant shutdown, layoff so she has had a turn of bad luck," said Brimberry.

Attorney Jerry Brimberry said the the only other confrontation Woodley's had with law enforcement is a traffic violation, nearly 15 years ago.

The Georgia State Patrol Specialized Collision Reconstruction Team plans to be at the crash site Monday to map the crash site and continue their investigation.

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