Woman Starts Petition After Fiance Killed By Drunk Driver

Posted at 10:06 PM, Aug 20, 2016
and last updated 2016-08-20 23:42:19-04

A Greenbrier woman has started an online petition after her fiance was killed in a motorcycle crash in late June. 

Wallace Young, age 40, died after a driver crossed into his lane on Highway 76 and struck him head-on as he was heading to work, according to the Tennessee Highway Patrol. 

Young was thrown across the road and died instantly. 

"Life without him is empty. It's dark and empty," Aphton Jennings, Young's fiance told NewsChannel 5.

Jennings and her biker friends gathered to honor Young through a bonfire at their house on Saturday night. The two first met at a bonfire before getting engaged a few months later. 

"There's not a day that goes by and I don't break down and cry," Jennings said. "Life feels like there's no purpose any longer."

The driver, Richard Kessinger, was booked into the Robertson County Detention Center charged with vehicular homicide. Officials with the Tennessee Highway Patrol said he was under the influence. 

Kessinger could face up to 12 years in prison, but Jennings feels that's too short.

"We want a harsher punishment for the person who took a life because 12 years is not enough," Jennings said.

She started an online petition on a few days before the bonfire, and it had already reached its goal of 1,000 signatures. Jennings has been wanting to present the petition to the state in hopes that his potential sentencing would be a maximum of 30 years instead.

In addition, Jennings hoped that it will create motorcycle safety awareness and stricter penalties for distracted driving.

"Bikers lives matter," Jennings added. "We matter just like anyone else who has four wheels that hit that road."

The number of motorcycle-related crashes has gone up this year compared to other years. So far, there have been 88 motorcycle fatalities in the state this year, according to those with THP. That's more than the total number in 2015.

To learn more about the petition, click on this link