Man sentenced to 10 years for two DUI deaths

By Times Staff Writer
Published February 1, 2006

LARGO - A St. Petersburg man was sentenced to 10 years in prison Tuesday for a drunken-driving crash in 2004 that killed two people in Clearwater.

David A. Sherman, 23, pleaded no contest to two counts of DUI-manslaughter for the March 20, 2004, crash at U.S. 19 and Tropic Hills.

Killed were Sherman's passenger and friend, Benjamin Smith, 20, and a passenger in another car, Miriam B. Harrell, 76, of Clearwater.

Police said Sherman was speeding north on U.S. 19 when he almost hit a car during a lane change, then spun into the southbound lanes and hit two other vehicles. Sherman, an airman stationed at Eglin Air Force Base at the time, had a blood-alcohol level of 0.15 percent, nearly twice the level at which, Florida law says, someone is too impaired to drive.

Sherman's sentence will be followed by five years of probation.