Sentence for drunk driver who fatally hit Westminster teenager upsets prosecutors, loved ones


Elliott Bond

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GOLDEN, Colo. — A man who pleaded guilty to a hit-and-run crash that killed a Westminster teenager while driving under the influence was sentenced Thursday.

Elliott Bond received five years in community corrections in the crash that killed 15-year-old Andrew Potter last year.

"I am a preschool special education teacher and he was assigned to my class," said Andrew's adopted mother Renee Potter. "He didn’t want to take the bus, [and said] that he wanted to come home with me. And six months later, he did."

Potter says her son had a traumatic brain injury and fostered him at the age of 3, formally adopting him two years later. Potter says her son was sent to Colorado to attend a special school because their district lacked the resources to take care of him at an older age.

But the decision for no jail time angered Potter and prosecutors who sought a longer sentence.

"I believe his sentence was too light and there are so many other options out there at this point to get home safely if you plan to drink," Potter said. "I mean, for blood alcohol content an hour and half after he hit my son and killed him to be .189... How many drinks did you have?"

“We are very disappointed in the outcome of this case,” First Judicial District Attorney Peter Weir said. “Mr. Bond had a BAC of .189 when he hit and killed this 15-year-old boy who was crossing the street.

“He then left him in the street so that he would not get caught. He could have been sentenced to 24 years in prison. Our prosecutor asked for 12 years. Instead, Mr. Bond was given a sentence to community corrections.”

Officers with the Westminster Police Department went to Church Ranch Boulevard and Wadsworth Parkway on Aug. 31. Potter was pronounced dead at the scene.

Officers found Bond was driving southbound on Wadsworth when he hit Potter, who was crossing against the light.

Prosecutors said Bond failed to stop and render aid or notify police. He continued to drive south on Wadsworth until he was stopped by police as he turned at Independence Street.

Bond pleaded guilty last month to vehicular homicide-DUI and leaving the scene of an accident with death. Both are felonies.

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