LAS VEGAS (KLAS) — The sentencing phase for Jordan Barson, the box truck driver who killed five cyclists in December near Searchlight, Nevada, has wrapped up for the day. The 45-year-old admitted he was under the influence of methamphetamine when he ran into the group on U.S. 95.
It was an emotional day in court Tuesday, as we heard from family of the five victims, and also the accused.
In April, Barson entered a plea agreement, reducing the number of charges he was facing to two counts of DUI resulting in death.
Family of some of the victims described how the sudden deaths of their loved ones changed their lives.
The first family member to speak was Donna Trauger, the wife of Tom Trauger. She shared how the loss of her husband haunts her every day.
“I wasn’t prepared when I drove out to the crash site and saw the letters HD and FT sprayed on the road and later learned that these were used to identify where the head and the feet of the victims lay dead,” Donna said. “These words and images haunt me as I lie in bed at night, waiting, praying and hoping for sleep to come.”
Douglas Murray, the brother of Michael Murray, looked at Barson, expressing his loss. You could also see the latter’s expression.
“Jordan Barson, there are no words,” Murray stated. “there are no words to express what you have done to our family, what you did to my brother. I cannot imagine him laying out there in the road, looking at the carnage that this man created.”
Sarah Woolsey, whose father was killed in the crash, said, “There was so much more he should have been able to do, see and teach Eli. But Mr. Barson, you took my dad away from me and Eli.”
At the start of the sentencing hearing, Barson stood up via video and said he was sorry and that he is ashamed of himself. He says after he gets out of prison, he wants to share his story at rehab facilities to prevent another tragedy like this.
Family members urged the judge to give Barson the maximum sentence of 40 years.
More family members will be speaking when the sentencing continues Wednesday afternoon.