Circuit Judge Timothy Register sentenced John Roland Goedtke to life imprisonment on Monday, the maximum sentence possible for his offenses.
Previously, on Jan. 23, Goedtke entered a no contest plea to the court, with no agreement from the State, to three counts of DUI manslaughter, one count of leaving the scene of a crash involving death, and one count of driving while license suspended or revoked.
The crash took the lives of linemen Ryan Barrett, George Cesil and James “Bo” Ussery. On Oct. 24, 2018, the men were working along Highway 77 to restore power after Hurricane Michael. Six family members from the Ussery family, the Barrett Family, and the Cesil family addressed the court at Monday’s sentencing hearing.
Goedtke had a lengthy arrest history from South Florida, officials said in a press release from the office of State Attorney Glenn Hess. The case was investigated by the Washington County Sheriff’s Office, the Chipley Police Department, the Florida Highway Patrol and the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. It was prosecuted by State Attorney Glenn Hess and Assistant State Attorney Mark E. Graham.