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Strong message to kids about DUI and Prom
Graduation and prom.
Exciting spring events when more teenagers are likely to drink and drive.
Today a group of students heard from a man serving a 15-year prison sentence for killing a teenager while drinking and driving.
His message seemed to get through to many of the students.
Washington High School Juniors and Seniors are on the cusp of one of the biggest days in their young lives the prom but before they get there.
The students were introduced to Chad Mattson.
"The choices we make, there are consequences for them at the end of the day"
Chad was a successful insurance salesman with a bright future.
But in September of 2009, he made a decision that would change his life.
Chad Mattson - Guilty of DUI Manslaughter: "The crime I committed is 100-percent avoidable, it's avoidable because you can just make a decision"
Chad got behind the wheel after having about 12 drinks.
He hit 15-year old, Taylor Smith while he was riding his bike.
He later died from his injuries.
Chad was charged with DUI Manslaughter, and is currently serving a 15-year prison sentence.
A day before Washington's prom, Chad's mother sent a stark message.
Rita Mattson - Chad's Mother: "Call your parents, call your friends, call anybody, but don't get into a vehicle because my son took a teenager's life"
Chad's former attorney reminded students they always have a choice.
Mark Upton - Chad's Former Attorney: "There are roads that we take that lead to more roads, more choices, and more decisions"
Chad's supporters hope through his experience,
Students are reminded to make the right decision and not drink and drive.
Natalie Ales - Washington High Senior: "One decision can change absolutely everything, and that's just eye opening"
Kavontae Smalls: "Several students have been asked to sign the pledge to not drink and drive, this banner will be hung on the wall at their prom."