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Woman accused of causing crash that killed 5-year-old asks to have driving privileges restored

Avondale Estates Crime and public safety Decatur Editor's Pick

Woman accused of causing crash that killed 5-year-old asks to have driving privileges restored

Michelle Wierson. Photo provided by the DeKalb County Sheriff's Office
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Michelle Wierson, an Avondale Estates resident who pleaded not guilty to charges of vehicular homicide, reckless driving, and battery stemming from a Sept. 27, 2018 crash that resulted in the death of 5-year-old Miles Jenness, is asking for permission to drive again.

Wierson’s attorney filed a motion in late August to modify her bond conditions to have her driving privileges restored. The motion says Wierson has complied with all conditions of her bond, which ordered her to comply with mental health treatment requirements, ordered her to have no contact with the Jenness family and required her to submit to alcohol and drug screens.

The motion notes that Wierson was not indicted on a charge of driving under the influence at the time of the crash. The DUI charge wasn’t presented to the grand jury. The grand jury also was not presented with charges of serious injury by vehicle and following too closely. It is not known why these charges were not presented to the grand jury. The affidavit in support of her arrest warrant alleges that Wierson was taking a combination of Ativan, Clonazepam (also known as Klonopin) and Seroquel at the time of the crash.

Wierson’s attorney, Corinne Mull, says her client is mentally ill and was “in the throes of a psychotic break” on Sept. 27, 2018 when she allegedly slammed into two vehicles with her Volkswagen on Midway Road at South Candler Street in Decatur. The crash fatally injured Jenness. Mull says a toxicology report shows Wierson had no controlled substances or alcohol in her system.

Wierson is a licensed psychologist with the state of Georgia. She specializes in family therapy, with a focus on addiction in teens and parents. Records with the Secretary of State’s Office show her license was renewed on Dec. 20, 2018 and will expire in 2020.

The motion to restore her client’s driving privileges says, “Defendant’s medication regimen has been changed since her arrest. She has been stable with same and fully compliant with treatment, with normal mental status and no signs of depression or mania. The new regimen, treating professionals believe, is preventative for future episodes.”

Mull had no comment on the motion to restore Wierson’s driving privileges.

Bruce Hagen, an attorney representing the Jenness family in a civil suit against Wierson, said the family was upset to hear about the motion so close to the 1-year-anniversary of their son’s death.

“As we approach the impossibility that almost a year has passed since Miles was killed just coming home from an after school program, it’s all too clear that time heals nothing: one year without Miles just turns into two without him, and the pain and grief continue,” the family said. “To hear … that the defense believes the court should grant Ms. Wierson her license to drive again as we mark the terrible anniversary of Miles’s death—it was shocking and hurtful. We continue to grieve for Miles, and love him beyond words. He should be here.”

A hearing on the motion to restore Wierson’s driving privileges is set for Wednesday, Oct. 2, at 11 a.m.

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