William LeVea, the Fulton man who recklessly caused the death of Christopher Spack when he repeatedly rammed his vehicle into the man’s pickup truck, has been denied a request for an early release from prison.
Tuesday morning (May 27) Cayuga County District Attorney Jon Budelmann released information received from the New York State Department of Corrections and Community Supervision that the parole board denied the convicted man’s request for early release on medical parole.
“Our office joins the family of Christopher Spack, Bradley Leyburn, Patrick Walton, and all of the other victims, and families of victims of William LeVea’s violent history, in thanking the public for the overwhelming show of support that helped defeat this defendant’s application for early release,” the DA said in his statement.
Donna Williams, who was Spack’s girlfriend, and spearheaded a Moveon.org petition to help keep LeVea in prison, said she was overwhelmed when she heard today’s news.
The online petition generated more than 3,000 signatures and was presented to the parole board to be considered as part of its decision process.
“I was happy and sad all at once,” Williams told Oswego County Today. “Happy LeVea won’t be released, sad Chris still isn’t here.”
During his trial, LeVea acknowledged that the District Attorney could prove beyond a reasonable doubt that on Nov. 20, 2009, at about 6:35 p.m., while driving westbound on Route 370 (east of Route 176) in the town of Cato, he recklessly and repeatedly rammed his car into the back of Spack’s 2000 Ford Ranger.
During a Cayuga County Court hearing in January 2010, Assistant District Attorney Diane Adsit said Spack was rammed by LeVea on Plainville Road in Onondaga County. She said Spack could be heard asking for help on E-911 recordings leading up to the crash in Cayuga County, and telling E-911 officials that he did not know who was chasing him or why they repeatedly rammed him whenever he tried to stop or pull over.
On the E-911 recording, “You hear the vehicle being rammed by the defendant,” Adsit said.
Williams said Spack was on the way to her house the night of the fatal crash. “I was the last person to talk to Chris,” Williams told Oswego County Today. “I heard everything on the phone that was happening, I went to the scene of the accident. I was so glad his family didn’t see what I did.”
It was revealed during the trial that the last time LeVea hit Spack’s truck they were driving at approximately 80 miles per hour.
The impact sent the truck spinning into oncoming traffic where the victim’s vehicle was struck by Leyburn’s Chevy Silverado, ripping Spack’s truck in half, ejecting and instantly killing the father-of-two.
Meanwhile Leyburn suffered a serious ankle injury during the collision and his 16-year-old passenger was not physically injured.
LeVea, now 83, was convicted of aggravated vehicular homicide and driving while intoxicated.
In March 2011 he was sentenced to serve 6-18 years at Livingston Correctional Facility.
When Williams learned that LeVea was seeking an early release from prison for medical reasons, she said at first she was speechless, then felt the need to be Spack’s voice so the community could help show the parole board what a disservice that would be.
“I became furious,” she said. “How can they let a murderer free because he is ‘sick’? I couldn’t let the justice system fail us. This man is a repeat offender and has no remorse. I knew I had to do to something not only for Chris but for his children.”
“At the funeral his daughter was (screaming and) shaking him to wake up. How do you explain to a 14-year-old and a 10-year-old they can’t touch their father because he was put back together and his body is fragile?” she added.
Williams said she knew the family needed more voices, “to show the parole board how this monster effected their lives.”
Searching the Internet for help, Williams said she came upon the Moveon.org website.
“We didn’t have much time but needed to reach as many people as possible,” she said.
Within two weeks of posting the petition the site had more than 3,000 signatures some asking, others demanding the parole board deny LeVea’s request for freedom.
“I was thrilled with the outcome!” Williams said. “I am not sure how much the petition effected the parole board’s decision but I feel I made a difference in keeping him where he belongs.”
In its decision the parole board stated, “The panel has determined that if released at this time, there is a reasonable probability that you (William LeVea) would not live and remain at liberty without again violating the law. Parole is denied.”
Budelmann noted Tuesday that the public has won the battle for now, “but our fight to keep this killer behind bars for the rest of his life will continue next summer, when this dangerous criminal comes up for his first regular parole hearing.”
Meanwhile the DA added, “the family of Christpher Spack is relieved to know that the man that killed their son, brother, father, husband and friend will remain behind bars for a least another year.”