By Mike LaBella
---- — HAVERHILL — A local man was sentenced to five to seven years in prison today, after he was found guilty of drunken driving and causing serious injury.
William Copeland, 58, of Haverhill was found guilty of operating under the influence and causing serious bodily injury to people over 60 by an Essex Superior Court jury following his trial in Salem Superior Court.
According to press release issued by the Essex District Attorney's Office, Judge Timothy Feeley sentenced Copeland to five to seven years in state prison, to be served. The jury returned the verdict after deliberating for nearly four hours.
Copeland was convicted of two counts of operating under the influence of alcohol and causing serious bodily injury and two counts of assault and battery with a dangerous weapon on a person over 60 years old.
Essex Assistant District Attorney Janelle Amadon proved that on Dec. 24, 2011, Copeland was under the influence of alcohol while driving his Ford pickup truck on North Broadway. He struck a utility pole and then crossed the center yellow line and crashed head-on into a Ford Explorer. The victims, who were 63 and 65 at the time, suffered serious injuries. Copeland was also injured.
A complete report will appear in Friday's edition of The Eagle-Tribune.