Casper Man Sentenced in UW Student Death
A Casper man has been sentenced in the death of a University of Wyoming student last October.
Dalton Williams, who pled guilty to manslaughter in early June, has been sentenced to 3-5 years in prison, followed by placement in a boot camp program. He has been remanded pending transportation.
Williams was accused of killing UW student Joseph McGowan last Halloween during an altercation at a house party. Williams was 20 years old at the time of the incident.
At the start of the proceedings, Ann McGowan, mother of Joseph McGowan made a statement.
McGowan's statement was followed by a statement from the defendant, who said that he was "not asking for forgiveness," but wanted to "sincerely apologize" for his actions.
Before the prosecution and defense gave their recommendations, Albany County District Judge Jeffrey Donnell asked Williams why he was at the party that night, despite the fact that he was not old enough to drink. During this conversation Donnell remarked that "there seems to be an attitude among people your age that it [the legal drinking age] means nothing."
Defense Attorney Thomas Smith of Casper, who has been representing Williams, recommended that Williams be sent to an in-patient treatment facility for alcohol abuse with probation instead of the boot camp program following Williams' incarceration, stating that "I don't think society needs to be protected from this young man."
Albany County prosecutor Kurt Britizius upheld the State's recommendation, noting that it was "generous" and developed with the input of Joseph McGowan's parents.
Before handing down his sentence, Donnell reflected on his 19 years on the bench, mentioning that he has presided over many cases of this nature in that time, including the death of 8 UW track students in a drunk driving incident. Donnell said that this was "not a case of 2 young men at the wrong place at the wrong time" and closed his remarks by saying that he hopes that "somebody someplace will take a lesson from this."