Crime

Persistent DWI offender, convicted in 2004 fatal crash, is sentenced in recent DWI

MCDONALD COUNTY, Mo. - Edward Meerwald, of Noel, Missouri, recently appeared in court for two recent DWI cases. He entered a plea bargain in both.

A judge sentenced Meerwald to four years in prison for a May 2019 DWI Persistent charge. Meerwald is scheduled to be sentenced for a June 2018 DWI Persistent charge on January 30th, 2020.

DWI case history for Meerwald

2004: Jessica Mann, 7, and her 69-year-old grandfather, James Dodson, were walking to the mailbox at Dodson's home on Highway 86 in Neosho, Missouri when Meerwald hit them. Meerwald plead guilty on March 11th, 2005, to Involuntary Manslaughter - Vehicular - Intoxicated {Felony C RSMo: 565.024}. A judge ordered him to spend 14 years in prison. The courts released Meerwald early in November 2013 and a judge restored his driving privileges in January 2017. He was discharged from parole on February 1st, 2017, according to the Newton County Prosecutor's Office.

A Missouri Law, nicknamed "Jessica's Law," was created in honor of Mann and her grandfather. It was signed into law in 2005 by then Governor Matt Blunt. It modifies several definitions, including "persistent offender," and increases the penalties for manslaughter involving drunk drivers.

2018: On June 17th, a Missouri State Highway Patrol Trooper arrested Meerwald for driving while intoxicated and for speeding. The arrested happened on MO 59 south of Split Log Road in McDonald County. The courts filed a charge of DWI-Persistent {Felony E RSMo: 577.010}.

According to court documents, Meerwald was put on house arrest after making bond. At a later date, the court held a hearing to modify his house arrest that would have allowed him to go to church and work. But according to the McDonald County Courts, the judge has not signed that order. Click here for Probable Cause in case

2019: On May 4th, the Prosecutor's Office filed a charge of DWI - Persistent {Felony E RSMo: 577.010}. The courts ordered no bond and scheduled a hearing for May 7th, 2019. Click here for Probable CauseComplaint

______

Get the latest local and national headlines straight to your email for free: Sign up here.


Regional Headlines

More from KOAMNewsNow.com

  • Sign up for email newsletters and breaking news alerts
    Copyright 2018 by KOAMNewsNow KOAM. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
  • Advertise With Us
    Copyright 2019 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
  • Our Apps
  • Events
    Copyright 2019 by KOAMNewsNow KOAM. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.