Singh sentenced to 15 years to life in DUI death
By Peggy Kelly
Santa Paula News
Published: December 14, 2012
A Santa Paula neighborhood market owner was sentenced Wednesday to 15 years to life in prison for vehicular manslaughter and other charges related to the death of a 20-year-old Ventura College student.
Satnam Singh, 50, of Ventura, pleaded guilty last month during his trial to second-degree murder, driving under the influence of alcohol and causing serious bodily injury in a series of hit-and-run accidents that ended after he struck and killed Nick Haverland.
Haverland was riding his bike along Telegraph Road in Ventura on May 11, 2011, when Singh’s green Hummer hit him. Haverland was declared deceased at the scene.
When Singh struck Haverland it was the third collision he had been involved in a matter of minutes. The first crash left a mother and daughter bicycling together with broken bones.
After he struck Haverland, Singh drove his heavily damaged Hummer to his home about a mile away and parked in the driveway. A witness who followed him from the crash site stayed on scene until Ventura Police arrived and removed Singh from the vehicle after he refused to exit it. Singh had a blood-alcohol level of 0.39 percent, nearly five times the legal limit of 0.08, according to the prosecution.
At the sentencing Ventura County Superior Court Judge Bruce Young said Singh must first serve two years in prison for the DUI conviction before he can begin the 15 years to life sentence.
Haverland’s parents and others gave victim impact statements to the court about the loss of the college student who was on his way to take a final exam when he was struck and killed. Singh’s mother and brother also made statements to the court about how Singh’s conviction has impacted their lives. They also apologized to Haverland’s family.