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Man sentenced to 45 years for killing former Dallas city councilwoman, her daughter in car crash

Former Dallas City Councilwoman Carolyn Davis

The news of the sentencing of Jonathan Alger Moore, 38, to 45 years in prison for the deaths of former Dallas City Council member Carolyn Davis and her daughter, brought no feelings of comfort for those who are still mourning the death of their loved ones.

Mr. Moore, who was under the influence of Ambien on July 15, 2019, when he drove into oncoming traffic and hit the car carrying 57-year-old Davis and 27-year-old Melissa Lashan Davis-Nunn, pleaded guilty to two counts of murder and was sentenced on both charges. The sentences will run concurrently.

Mr. Moore has a long history of driving while intoxicated and has four prior criminal convictions for driving under the influence of alcohol and drugs, according to court records.

Prosecutor Lauren Black filed a motion to hold Mr. Moore’s bond insufficient in December 2019 after he had two breath testing violations and didn’t charge his electronic leg monitor.

His bail was subsequently increased and he was re-arrested.

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“He wasn’t doing what he needed to do. If he was out on the streets, I was worried,” said Ms. Black, the chief of the misdemeanor division in the Dallas County District Attorney’s Office.

In July 2019, Mr. Moore was speeding in the eastbound lanes of Led better Drive and crossed over the raised median into the westbound lanes. He did not attempt to use his brakes before the fatal crash.

His SUV hit Davis’ car head on. A witness told authorities she heard Mr. Moore say he had fallen asleep at the wheel, police records show.

Moore had been released from probation for a prior driving while intoxicated case days before the fatal crash, according to court records.

“He had his chances multiple times. The court system gave Jonathan Moore plenty of time to get his act together,” Ms. Black said, adding that Mr. Moore’s initial arrests were related to his alcohol consumption but, over time, he turned to other intoxicants to escape detection. His escalating behavior is the reason for his lengthy sentence, she said.

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She said it’s hard for the families of those killed by an intoxicated driver.

“I know how these types of crimes affect everyone. It’s traumatic for who’s left,” Ms. Black said. “This has been a hard time for the Davis family.”

Several shared their thoughts on social media and in public as they dealt with the tragedy again in the wake of the sentencing.

Many praised Ms. Davis for her service and commitment to her hometown.

“Carolyn Davis, was a leader that didn’t mind sticking her neck out and making lasting decisions. One example is her leading the way in changing Grand Ave. to Al Lipscomb Blvd, bold and audacious she was,” Yafeuh Balogun of Guerrilla Mainframe.

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Her term on the Dallas City Council and continued efforts were lauded.

“Whether it was racial, economic or environmental justice, Sis. Carolyn fought to make our community and district whole,” said Bro. Jeffery Muhammad, former minister of Muhammad Mosque No. 48. “She wasn’t afraid to invite the planning commission and community to meet at the mosque.“

Touting other efforts by Ms. Davis, Mr. Muhammad elaborated on her efforts to make the community safer and more progressive.

“I’m happy to see the progress in removing Dead Man’s Curve, connecting Hwy 175 and and I45, making S. M. Wright Freeway a boulevard with economic development zones and reconnecting the community it divides. May Allah be pleased with our dear Sister,” he said.

Under Texas law, Mr. Moore is required to serve half of his sentence before he is eligible for parole.

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