A 28-year-old Bay resident will serve 30 years in prison after driving impaired in a crash that ejected and killed a 23-year-old passenger.
Timothy James Tucker will serve a longer prison term than the maximum penalty of 25 years for DUI causing a death.
At the time of the Bay St. Louis crash that killed Jasmyne Eimers on Aug. 12, 2015, Tucker was on probation for possession of precursors with intent to manufacture meth. His probation was revoked two months later. A judge sent him to prison to serve 12 years on a 15-year sentence for the meth conviction.
Judge Larry Bourgeois on Monday sentenced Tucker to 25 years in prison on a guilty plea for the fatal crash at a home on Avenue B, where Eimers’ school-age children were spending the night, District Attorney Joel Smith said.
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Bourgeois suspended seven years, leaving 18 years to serve, and ordered the prison term served consecutively to the prison sentence on the meth conviction, or a total of 30 years.
Tucker will start serving time on the DUI death conviction June 1, 2026. That’s when his prison term ends on the meth conviction, the state prison website shows.
Tucker’s blood-alcohol content from a court-ordered blood sample after the crash was 0.123, Smith said. The state’s legal limit is 0.08.
Smith said Tucker told the court he had been drinking with some friends at the home on Avenue B when he decided to go buy more alcohol.
Tucker was driving a 2004 Nissan Maxima at more than 100 mph when he hit a culvert, causing the car to become airborne, investigators with the Bay St. Louis Police Department and Mississippi Highway Patrol concluded.
The car struck a utility pole, a ditch, a tree and the home’s second-story porch staircase. The neighborhood is near 10th Street.
Eimers, from Mountain Home, Arkansas, died of head injuries. The other passenger, Tucker’s brother, survived without life-threatening injuries.
Tucker apologized in court, Smith said, telling the judge, “If I could change spots with Jasmyne, I would. Every day, I think she is gone because of what I did.”
In a statement provided to the court, Eimer’s mother, Beverly Eimers, wrote that her daughter’s children remember the night and the police showing up.
“When you killed her, you killed a part of all of us,” Beverly Eimers wrote.
Smith said Bourgeois told Tucker it wasn’t an accident.
“It was a conscious decision to drink and drive,” Bourgeois said.
“You did, and she died. Her parents and small children are suffering. There are a lot of happy memories that neither will experience.
“You will serve 30 years — that is longer than you have been alive.”
Smith said the case shows “the terrible consequences” of drinking and driving.
“These families will never fully recover from this loss.” he said.