Missouri man gets life sentence for fatal DUI

LIBERTY, Mo. (AP) — A 30-year-old Lawson man has been sentenced to life in prison for his conviction in a drunk driving accident in western Missouri that killed a 60-year-old woman.

Lucas Bates was sentenced Friday in Clay County court to life plus 14 years. He pleaded guilty earlier to second-degree murder, two counts of second-degree assault and flight to avoid arrest.

The charges stem from a March 2009 crash when Bates was driving drunk and caused a crash that killed Shirley Harless.

The Kansas City Star reported that Bates had a prior felony drug conviction. He apologized to victim’s family at the sentencing and said he had battled a lifelong addiction to drugs and alcohol.

Circuit Judge Shane Alexander said Bates had opportunities to get treatment for his addictions but didn’t take advantage of them.

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