According to the indictment and the witness interviews from the crime scene, after attending a South Houston County "Mud Boggin'" on November 4, 2006, Sinyard was driving Huckaby and Williams from a party in the early morning hours on November 5, 2006. As Sinyard's SUV rounded a curve on Grovania Road, he lost control of the vehicle and the vehicle left the roadway. Huckaby, who was asleep in the backseat, was ejected from the vehicle and suffered several traumatic injuries. Williams, riding in the front passenger seat, had injuries that included a broken pelvis and broken ribs.
Friends of the three men arrived on the seen and administered CPR to Huckaby, but attempts to revive him were unsuccessful and he was pronounced dead on the scene.
Sinyard appeared dazed and belligerent. He told witnesses that the victim was merely sleeping and interfered with other's attempts at CPR. After threatening to leave the scene and further interference with EMT's attempts to save Huckaby's life, he was detained in a patrol car. Once authorities learned he was the driver of the SUV, he was arrested for vehicular homicide.
At the time of the incident, Sinyard's driver's license was suspended for a previous DUI in Houston State Court, and he was on probation for a previous driving on suspended license charge. Once he made bond, Sinyard was sent back to jail after he violated the terms of his house arrest by smoking marijuana.
The families of both the defendant and the victim made passionate pleas for justice to be done. There was no doubt left that Joey Huckaby's early demise had a profound impact on his family and that the world is a lesser place as a result of his death.
At sentencing today, Sinyard's attorney asked for a sentence of 3 years in prison, and suggested the court exempt from the sentence any portion Sinyard used to tell other young people about the dangers of drinking. The State countered that Sinyard deserved a much more severe sentence in light of his prior arrest history, his actions on the night of the offense, and behavior once out on bond.
Houston County District Attorney Kelly Burke:
"Cpl. Sean Alexander of the Houston County Sheriff's Office investigated the case exhaustively and it was his investigation that made this case rock solid as we headed to trial. Mr. Sinyard's consistent denial that he was the driver, while illogical, was proven to be false as a result of Cpl. Alexander's excellent work. Sheriff Talton is to be congratulated for having one of the finest traffic investigation units in Georgia, which makes my job all the easier."
"There were no winners today or back on November 5, 2006. The community lost a fine young man in Joey Huckaby and now the family of Alan Sinyard will miss him for the next ten years as well. While we have done so much to educate our youth about the perils of drunk driving, the lesson keeps being driven home by the death of innocent people on our roads. We have to do more. Parents, please educate your children and enforce responsible driving restrictions while you can. If not, someone may pay the ultimate price".
"The family of Joey Huckaby has asked that I direct that the restitution paid by Sinyard be divided between HODAC's Victim Assistance Program and M.A.D.D. That contribution of $2500 to each program shows both what a generous family Joey has and what a great job both of these programs are doing in assisting the victims of crime in dealing with the results of that crime. My hat's off to the Huckaby family for their generosity."
The case was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney K. David Cooke, Jr., and ADA Erikka Williams of the District Attorney's Office. Althea Buafo of Macon represented Mr. Sinyard at the sentencing hearing.