Vehicular Homicide Leads to 12-Year Sentence for Tyronza Man

JUNE 30, 2004 - Posted at 2:25 p.m. CDT

MEMPHIS, TN - A Poinsett County man has been sentenced to twelve years in prison for crashing into a stalled van and killing three people on a bridge spanning the Mississippi River at the Arkansas-Tennessee border near Memphis.

Mark Allen Richards of Tyronza pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide after killing a couple from Stillwater, Oklahoma, and their nephew from Jasper, Texas.

The prosecutor in the case said Richards suddenly and recklessly switched traffic lanes on the Hernando DeSoto Bridge just before the crash.  The lawyer also said Richards had a small amount of illegal stimulant in his blood at the time of crash.

(The Associated Press contributed to this report.)