The Joint Base Lewis-McChord soldier whose drunk-driving crash killed an Army reservist earlier this year in Lakewood was sentenced this week to seven years’ confinement at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas.
Spc. Jefferson Taylor, 22, pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter and fleeing the scene of an accident, JBLM spokesman Gary Dangerfield said. On top of the seven years in military prison, Taylor was demoted to private and will receive a bad conduct discharge from the Army.
Taylor was originally charged in Pierce County Superior Court for the May 17 crash that killed Hernan Barragan, 32, of Hollister, California, but the case was moved to military jurisdiction in June.
The two men were inside Taylor’s pickup truck as he drove upwards of 80 mph in a 25 mph zone along 108th Street Southwest when he lost control just after midnight May 17 near Douglas Drive Southwest.
The truck hit a power pole and then kept going another 500 feet, destroying two street signs before coming to rest in the middle of the road.
As Barragan lay dying, Taylor took off running.
While two officers were trying to keep Barragan alive, Taylor attempted to force his way into a nearby apartment.
A police dog tracked him toan apartment where he was laying on the ground outside, with his bloody handprints all over the door.
Taylor fought with officers on his way to jail, spit blood at them and threatened to kill them.
Staff writer Alexis Krell contributed to this report.