Most of us were taught that if you make a mistake, the most important thing you can do is admit to it right away, and either fix it yourself or get help. Especially if your mistake hurts another person. Perhaps Chante Mallard was never taught this lesson.

It is nearly the 22nd anniversary of a crime so bizarre and cruel that it inspired multiple episodes in TV crime dramas like CSI and Law & Order and one "horror comedy" movie Stuck that, judging from the trailer, looks like a less-than-stellar cinematic offering.

On the night of October 26, 2001, Chante Mallard went out partying and partied hard. Ecstacy, marijuana, and alcohol.  On the way home she struck a homeless man on the freeway. Scared to get a DWI, she drove home. But this was more than a hit-and-run, as the man was halfway lodged into her windshield, and still alive in her garage.

Unsplash/ Texas Department of Corrections
Unsplash/ Texas Department of Corrections

There is some debate as to how long the man bled to death stuck in Mallard's windshield. It is known that her victim, Greg Biggs, had a near-total amputation of his left leg from that accident. However, it was the expert opinion of the medical examiner that if Mallard had sought help when the accident occurred, Biggs likely would have survived. Mallad allowed Biggs to die in a slow and horrible way, so this was more than manslaughter- this was murder.

Having a dead man halfway through your windshield in your garage is a big problem, and Mallard needed help. So she called friends who helped her remove the now-dead man from the windshield, wrap him in a blanket, and dump his body in a park. They also set Mallad's car partially on fire in an attempt to destroy evidence.

Perhaps the wildest part of this whole story is that Mallard might have gotten away with murder (and her friends with evidence tampering) had she simply resisted the temptation to brag about killing the man:

Mallard became a suspect after she was reported talking and laughing about the incident at a party some four months after the events. "I hit this white man," Mallard allegedly told acquaintance Maranda Daniel, laughing.

If you had any sympathy for Mallard and the poor mistake she made while she panicked, I understand if that sympathy just flew out the windshield window.

Mallard was convicted of murder and evidence tampering and was sentenced to, "50 years in prison for murder and 10 years for tampering with evidence." She is eligible for parole pretty soon: she could leave prison in about 5 years.

Homeless people are just that: people. Greg Biggs was only 37 years old and was a father. He was loved and his life mattered. The cruel and unusual nature of his death is a huge tragedy, and it is my opinion that it was only fair that Mallard was prosecuted appropriately, given the cruel and callous nature of her crime.

Obviously, no one should drink and do drugs and then drive. If she had owned up to her mistake when it happened, she would have spent way less time in jail, and her friends would have never been involved. And most importantly, Greg Biggs would have likely survived and may have even gotten the help he needed to get off the streets.

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