‘We’re not happy’: Mother upset over 10-year sentence in deadly crash that left three dead

‘We’re not happy’: Mother upset over 10-year sentence in deadly crash that left three dead
Garth Treadway (Source: JRLDC)

CONWAY, S.C. (WMBF) – A Conway man will spend a decade behind bars for a 2018 crash that left three people dead.

According to information from the 15th Circuit Solicitor’s Office, 54-year-old Garth Treadway pleaded guilty Monday to three counts of reckless homicide.

Officials said Circuit Court Judge Kristi Curtis sentenced Treadway, who has a lengthy criminal history dating back to 1983, to the maximum of 10 years in prison on each count. The sentences will run concurrently.

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His charges stemmed from a crash that happened on May 4, 2018, on Robert M. Grissom Parkway and Executive Drive.

The crash killed 25-year-old Nicholas Norris, 24-year-old Kristie Drewes, who was Norris’ girlfriend of four years, and 34-year-old Gulnoza Tashmatova. A small child was also injured.

“No, we’re not happy with 10 years.” Ashely Aldridge, Norris’ mother, said. “No punishment on this Earth will ever make up for the loss of Nicholas and Kristie.”

Prosecutors said Treadway sped through the intersection across Robert M. Grissom Parkway without stopping at the posted stop sign. He then struck the motorcycle driven by Norris, on which Dewes was a passenger. Both were pronounced dead at the scene.

“It has been a great loss... a great hole in our hearts,” Aldridge said.

After striking the motorcycle, Treadway hit an SUV, in which Tashmatova and the child were back seat passengers. Tashmatova was later pronounced dead at Grand Strand Regional Medical Center as the result of internal injuries suffered in the crash, according to authorities.

Fifteenth Circuit Solicitor Jimmy Richardson said Treadway was initially charged with three counts of felony DUI, which if resulted in death, carries a maximum 25-year sentence.

However, Treadway’s blood-alcohol level was .06 the night of the crash, which fell below the .08 standard to be considered legally drunk in South Carolina.

“When we ran all of the tests and talk to all of the experts, there was absolutely no way to convict this person of felony DUI,” Richardson said. “The blood alcohol ratio was just too small.”

Instead, he pled guilty to three counts of reckless homicide.

Richardson said Treadway will serve the sentences simultaneously since the three deaths resulted from the same wreck.

Mary-Ellen Walter, the senior solicitor who prosecuted this case, and assistant solicitor Liz Smith released the following statement after Treadway’s sentence was handed down:

“This was a senseless act that claimed the lives of three truly innocent victims. The Myrtle Beach Police Department, Myrtle Beach Fire Department and Horry County Fire Rescue worked tirelessly the day of the crash in an effort to save the victims. The continued work of the Myrtle Beach Police Department, including the assigned investigator Corporal Joseph Lardino, helped bring a bit of justice for the victims in this case. While no sentence will compensate for the lives lost that day, the State is thankful that Treadway was sentenced to the maximum.”

Aldridge said there’s some comfort in Treadway being sentenced.

The family can now move forward and focused not on how her son and his girlfriend died, but remember them for how they lived.

“If you needed anything, Kristie and Nicholas were there,” Aldridge said.

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