Ellzey Found Guilty; Friends of Simms Express Relief

Friends of 26 year old Allison Simms say justice has been served. The woman who hit and killed Simms in January 2012 is going to prison.

Jurors found Juliana Ellzey guilty of leaving the scene of a traffic crash involving a death.

Defense attorney Bill Price hoped to sway jurors Wednesday into believing his client had no way of knowing she hit and killed Allison Simms last January.

"Not one single person is going to say that she knew or she should of known or that she knowingly or that she willingly or any of the other words that we use legally - nobody is going to say those magic words to suggest that my client knew that she hit that poor girl," Price said in his opening statement.

Price also used props to make his point, but the jury didn't buy his arguments returning a guilty verdict.

That decision was a relief for her friends

"I about fainted," said Lisa Anderson about receiving the verdict. "It took everything in my body, I felt my knees buckle and I was holding onto Amanda and Brandy was holding onto her and so all three of us I could feel all of us just...it feels like this huge weight just was lifted off our shoulders."

"I was relieved that that wasn't just gonna go away, I was relieved that justice was served," said Amanda Childs.

"People think that it's okay to get behind the wheel, that nothing's going to happen because they're invincible nothing can happen to them," said Brany Kennamore. "Well today it shows that stuff can happen. When you drink and get behind the wheel, anything can happen."

Ellzey faces between 2 and 30 years in prison. Her sentencing is set for March 15th

EARLIER VERSION BELOW:

The six men of a Bay County jury convicted Juliana Ellzey on Wednesday of leaving the scene of a crash that killed a 26-year-old woman.

Assistant State Attorney Bob Sombathy told jurors in his opening statement that 23 year old Juliana Ellzey was out drinking the night of January 19 and into the morning of January 20 before driving away from a bar on Thomas Drive in her roommate’s vehicle.

A few minutes later she hit 26 year old Allison Simms as she was walking along Thomas Drive. The impact left a body impression in the hood and killed Simms almost instantly.

Simms’ body became lodged under the vehicle and was dragged for 50 feet.

Sombathy said that despite the violent collision and dragging, Ellzay did not stop. She told police later that she was so drunk that she didn’t know she’d hit someone, but knew she’d hit something.

Circuit Judge James Fensom scheduled sentencing for March 15.

Ellzey faces a maximum sentence of 30 years in prison.


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