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Driver in fatal Ga. ambulance crash receives reduced 8-year prison sentence

DUI charge and other charges against Kevin Tirrel McCorvey were dropped in a deal for a reduced prison sentence

By David Aaro
The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

FAIRBURN, Ga. — An ambulance driver was sentenced to at least eight years in prison Tuesday for his role in a crash that killed a 66-year-old patient in 2021, prosecutors said.

Kevin Tirrel McCorvey admitted to police that he had smoked marijuana, took Adderall and was drinking a beer as he drove the ambulance that crashed on Nov. 12, in Fairburn, according to a police report. The non-emergency patient, Wilton Thomason Jr., died while riding unrestrained on a gurney.

McCorvey was able to walk out of the Fulton County courthouse Tuesday after he reached a plea agreement that reduced his 13-count indictment to three counts, according to Channel 2 Action News. He was allowed to get his affairs in order, and in two weeks, will have to turn himself in.

The May 2022 indictment accused him of first-degree vehicular homicide and DUI for having alcohol and cocaine in his system and failing to properly secure Thomason. McCorvey did not put shoulder straps on the patient, the indictment alleged, something that was a “gross deviation from the standard of care which a reasonable person would exercise in the situation.”

“He should have been able to take a safe ride from the place where he lived to where he was getting medical treatment,” Fulton County District Attorney Fani Willis told the news station.

The ambulance was found by traffic investigators overturned in a ditch after it veered off the road, authorities said. Investigators determined that Thomason was thrown around inside as it rolled. He was secured only by leg restraints, which came undone during the crash, prosecutors said.

According to the indictment, McCorvey, who was 34 at the time, had an open container of malt liquor in his possession while driving. Following the crash, authorities said both he and another crew member tried to call an Uber to leave but were told to stay by responding law enforcement. McCorvey was arrested at the scene after state troopers performed a field sobriety test.

Thomason’s devastated family sued McCorvey, a second crew member, and Prime Care EMS — the private company for which McCorvey worked. On Tuesday, their attorney alleged that the ambulance company was not registered to operate, didn’t have insurance and had inadequately trained staff, Channel 2 reported.

Still, prosecutors said the family supported the guilty plea.

“We got a sentence the family believes is just,” Willis told the news station.

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