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Father in Ledyard drunk driving crash loses bid for lower bond

January 7, 2019

Marcus Harvin, who is serving a 14 1/2-year prison sentence for a 2014 drunk driving crash that left his daughter with a permanently disabled right arm, failed to convince a New London judge Monday to reduce his bond so that he could be free while appealing his conviction.

Harvin, 30, had sought a reduction in his $1 million appeal bond, saying his grandmother was ill and he is only able to undergo limited treatment for alcohol addiction in prison. Judge Barbara Bailey Jongbloed denied the motion, which was his second attempt at an reduction of his appeal bond.

Harvin had fired his attorney and represented himself at his 2016 trial in New London Superior Court.

Testimony indicated he had taken his daughters, ages two and four, to one of the area casinos on May 25, 2014. He consumed several drinks and drove with a blood alcohol concentration of 0.293 percent, more than three times the 0.08 percent legal limit, with the two children in the back seat of his Acura TL.

Harvin had struck a utility pole at high speed at the intersection of Long Cove and Baldwin Hill Roads, causing the engine and transmission to separate from the car, which became airborne and struck several items, including a guardrail and fence, before landing upside down in an in-ground swimming pool.

His two-year-old daughter’s arm was nearly severed in the crash, and she underwent six surgeries at Yale-New Haven Hospital. His four-year-old suffered a less serious injury but was badly shaken.

A six-member jury found him guilty of second-degree assault with a motor vehicle, driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, two counts of risk of injury to a minor, two counts of first-degree reckless endangerment, reckless driving, interfering with a police officer and engaging police in a pursuit.

It was his second conviction for drunken driving, and Judge Barbara Bailey Jongbloed sentenced Harvin to 23 years in prison, suspended after 14 1/2 years, followed by five years probation.

Court documents indicate that Harvin, who had worked as a salesman for AT&T prior to his conviction, has kept busy while incarcerated at the MacDougall-Walker Correctional Institution. He has appealed his 2016 conviction, and filed lawsuits against attorney John Williams, who represented him at one time, the judge who presided over his trial and others.

Harvin also teamed up with other inmates in 2016 to file a federal civil rights complaint about the number of times they are allowed to flush the toilets in their cells, limited access to showers and the Department of Correctoin’s staff’s practice of passing cleaning supplies for toilets through the same cell door slot that is used for food. U.S. District Judge Victor A. Bolden dismissed the claims.

k.florin@theday.com

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