Community reacts to Troupe verdict - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Community reacts to Troupe verdict

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August 28, 2006

Douglas-  It's a verdict that shocked and angered so many people, yet confirmed what so many people felt was justice. 

The jury's acquittal of Amanda Troupe of vehicular homicide charges divides the community.  Troupe was driving drunk the night she hit an All Terrain Vehicle head on in Coffee County. Five children were killed.

District Attorney Rick Currie admits it was a difficult case to try.

"Nobody believed that Amanda Troupe intended to kill anybody and for that reason it does make it a little harder than my normal cases where people shoot each other and stab each other intending to do them harm," said  Rick Currie, District Attorney.

Many have questioned why only Troupe was charged, and not the parents who could have been charged with allowing an unlicensed operator of a motor vehicle.

"When I got the SCRT team report I sent a letter to the state court solicitor, and told him any decision as to those charges brought against the parents would be on him, and of course he never filed any charges," said Currie.

The community has been divided on blame and remains so even after the verdict.

"There were contributing factors to the case and those children should not have been on that four wheeler at that time of night, especially that many," said Richard Nichols.

"Kids, going to be kids, no matter what. That girl had no right being out there drinking and driving a vehicle, being behind the wheel of a vehicle," said Bruce Taylor.

While the criminal case is resolved, the civil cases are just beginning. All of the victim's families will file suit against Ruby Tuesday and Tammy Bass has filed suit against the Nelson's making public debate over this case far from over.

"I mean as fair as I can get it, because two wrongs don't make a right, on both sides," said Stephen Jackson. 

Amanda Troupe remains out of jail on a five thousand dollar bond, pending her sentencing.