A young Minneapolis, Minnesota man was sentenced to four years in prison April 5 for killing his girlfriend, Indian American business student Ria Patel, in a drunk driving incident last year.
Hennepin County, Minnesota District Court Judge Fred Karasov sentenced Michael Laurence Campbell, 21, to four years and four months for killing Patel early morning Sept. 17, 2017. Campbell was intoxicated as he careened into a stop light in northeast Minneapolis. He fled the scene on foot.
Police arriving at the scene were able to free Patel, 20 at the time of her death, from the car and provide medical aid until paramedics arrived. The youngster nevertheless died from massive head injuries, according to a report from the Hennepin County, Minnesota coroner’s office.
On March 14, a Hennepin County jury found Campbell guilty of three charges: two counts of criminal vehicular homicide — one for the crash, the other for leaving — and for a lesser charge of leaving the scene of an accident not caused by the driver that resulted in a death.
Campbell had a history of offenses, including several instances of speeding, underage drinking, and using marijuana. Judge Karasov listed Campbell’s 12 past driving offenses before he delivered the sentence.
“Here we are with a tragic accident that happened as a result of your driving,” Karasov said.
Campbell stood before the court and apologized, as reported by Eden Prairie News. He said he loved Patel and wanted to spend his life with her. “Every time I looked into her eyes I fell more in love with her,” he said, acknowledging that the young woman’s death was his fault, and that he would have to live with the memory of that fatal night for the rest of his life.
Campbell maintained throughout the trial that the accident was