By Joe Bachman
A Nekoosa woman will serve nine years imprisonment for the negligent death of 38-year-old Scott Carslon, five of which will be served under extended supervision.
“All Jessica Hendricks had to do was put down her phone, pay attention to the road, and just drive.”
Tearful words made by the victim’s brother, as he recalled the night of the fatal crash that took Scott’s life. According to police reports, on July 25, 2015, a then 29-year-old Jessica Hendricks was in the process of following Carlson home to drop off his motorcycle near the intersection of State Highway 73 in Port Edwards when she took her eyes off the road to check a text message. Seconds later, Hendricks struck Carlson with her vehicle.
He would later be pronounced dead at the scene.
Carlson left behind two children whom he raised partially with Hendricks. Once a couple for five years, they broke off their relationship and stayed friends, and even lived together at the time of the accident.
Attorney Jessica Phelps described the defendant as “remorseful” and that Hendricks had said that “she wishes it was her.” Phelps asked Judge Potter for a lesser sentence than the ten years recommended by District Attorney Craig Lambert.
“I would like to apologize to all I have affected by my mistakes,” said Hendricks. “I take full responsibility for my actions — From the moment I took my eyes off the road, I will relive that moment for the rest of my life.”
Hendricks also faced charges of three counts of credit card fraud in the total of $40,000 when according to her attorney, used her grandmother’s credit card to help Scott with his motorcycle shop.
“Unfortunately, this is a good message to send to our community that this type of behavior can end in this unfortunate result,” said Potter.
Hendricks was sentenced to an additional three years probation for three counts of forgery, as well as be required to speak at local high schools four times a year throughout her five year extended supervision on the dangers of texting and driving.