LUMBERTON — A Fairmont man has been found guilty of murder in the death of his wife, who died from injuries she suffered in a car accident, according to a statement from Erich Hackney, an investigator for the county’s District Attorney’s Office.
Terry Dean Spivey Sr., 45, of 579 Bailey Road, was convicted Friday of second-degree murder, aggravated death by vehicle, child abuse and seat-belt violations and sentenced to 23 to 28 years in prison. The Robeson County jury also determined that Spivey violated the terms of his pretrial release for a previous DWI when he was charged with discharging a weapon into an occupied dwelling three weeks before the Oct. 2, 2009, wreck, which elevated his punishment, according to the statement.
Spivey was driving a vehicle on East Pond Road near Fairmont when it entered a curve and then exited the left side of the road and hit a tree. Spivey had a blood-alcohol level of .24, which is more than three times the legal limit, according to the statement.
His wife, Sue Ellen Westbrook Spivey, died on Oct. 18, 2009, at UNC Hospitals in Chapel Hill.
Spivey was initially charged with felony death by vehicle, driving while intoxicated, driving while license revoked, reckless driving and misdemeanor child abuse by the Highway Patrol, according to the statement. The child abuse charge was because his 6-year-old granddaughter was in the car while he was intoxicated. Spivey having four previous DWI convictions and 11 charges of driving while license revoked, according to the statement.
In addition, Spivey was on probation at the time of the wreck for a DWI conviction from Oct. 27, 2008, according to the statement. Spivey was fined $400, given seven days in jail and 18 months probation for that offense.
Spivey testified that he was not the driver, but several witnesses testified that Spivey was the driver and that his feet had to be dislodged from underneath the gas and break pedals of the vehicle.
“This is one of the worst death cases involving a traffic collision in that virtually every bone in Sue’s body was broken,” Hackney said in the statement. “To make matters worse, Spivey showed absolutely no remorse for his actions and blamed the collision on his deceased wife. He even had his family members say that Sue was driving. I don’t think it gets any worse than that.”
Assistant District Attorney Allan Adams prosecuted the case.