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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Oklahoma

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, November 18, 2022

Woman Who Drove with Meth in her System Sentenced for Taking Another Woman’s Life in a Collision

A woman who drove while under the influence of methamphetamine and caused a collision that killed another driver was sentenced today in federal court, announced U.S. Attorney Clint Johnson.

U.S. District Judge Gregory K. Frizzell sentenced Courtney Gail Lawson, 43, of Haskell, to 37 months in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release. During the sentencing hearing, the victim’s husband and friends spoke of their tremendous loss and about what Chelsea meant to each of them and her family. Her husband called her a light in the lives of those who knew and loved her.

On April 1, 2022, Lawson pleaded guilty to the charge in the indictment, involuntary manslaughter in Indian Country. In her plea agreement, Lawson admitted that on Dec. 2, 2020, she had a detectable amount of methamphetamine in her system, drove over 100 miles per hour, and tried to pass in a no passing zone. At that time, she struck an oncoming vehicle, killing the driver Chelsea Pugh.

Judge Frizzell ordered Lawson to self report to the U.S. Bureau of Prisons in December.

The Oklahoma Highway Patrol, FBI, and Oklahoma State Bureau of Investigation conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael F. Harder prosecuted the case.

Topic(s): 
Indian Country Law and Justice
Contact: 
Public Affairs 918-382-2755
Updated November 18, 2022