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California Lottery Winner Sentenced to Prison

Posted by Courtney Pilchman | Aug 18, 2008 | 0 Comments

Thomas Turnour, of Victorville was sentenced to 17 years in prison for a DUI crash that killed three people. Turnour, won $10 million in the California Lottery in 2001 and has settled a civil suit with the victims' families for $2 million.

On May 5, 2005, Turnour was driving a 2005 GMC pickup about 4:30 p.m. when he hit the back of a Ford Taurus stopped at a red light, police have said. The impact pushed the Taurus into two other vehicles, collapsing the rear and front of the car. Inside were five family members on their way to visit relatives.

Killed in the gruesome crash were Guadalupe Luna, 22, Guadalupe Luna, 59, and Lucila Palafox, 39.

Turnour accepted a plea agreement where he plead guilty to three counts of gross vehicular manslaughter while intoxicated and one count of driving under the influence causing great bodily injury This was not Turnour's first brush with the law. In 1985, he was sent to prison for pleading guilty to possession for sale of marijuana. In 1988, he was convicted of arson where he served 2 months in jail. Also in 1988 he was convicted of misdemeanor burglary.

About the Author

Courtney Pilchman

Courtney Pilchman was a Deputy District Attorney for over six years prior to becoming a criminal defense attorney. She was a member of some of the most elite prosecution units including crimes against children, family violence, and sexual assault. She prosecuted very high profile cases and had a ...


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