10 Years Since Stephen Gates Was Killed Driver Gets More DWI Charges

10:57 PM, Oct 24, 2013   |    comments
  • Share
  • Print
  • - A A A +

GREENSBORO, N.C. -- It's been 10 years since Stephen Gates was killed in a car crash. One of the drivers involved has since been charged with 2 more DWIs. Stephen's parents want justice.

Stephen Gates was 27 years old when he was killed on Interstate 40 in Orange County. He was a UNC sports announcer and in the prime of his life. A SUV hit him when he was checking a flat tire on the side of the road. The driver stopped, but troopers say Rabah Samara took the wheel and left the crash scene. Police eventually caught Samara hours later in Raleigh.

Samara was convicted of DWI but found not guilty of hit and run because he was not the original driver.

Read here: Man Charged In Deadly Hit-And-Run Found Not Guilty

WFMY News 2's Liz Crawford learned Samara has been charged twice with DWI, since Stephen was killed.

Stephen's parents, Pat and George Gates, said they forgave Rabah Samara, the man who drove away and left their son for dead. But now, they say he hasn't done the one thing they asked.

Pat Gates, Stephen's mother, explained what she asked of Samara in 2003.

"Please make his life worthy of the one that was taken and he promised me that he would," said Samara.

WFMY News 2 learned since Stephen's death, Rabah Samara has been charged with two more DWIs, according to the North Carolina Administrative Office of the Courts records. He was found not guilty for one in 2006. The other occurred in March 2013. That trial is Thursday in Wake County.  The Gates will be going.

Thursday, the Gates' family went to Samara's trial for his third DWI. Samara got the lowest possible punishment. He'll have to pay a $100 fine and do 24 hours of community service.

"Just showing up there. I hope it reminds him of the promise that he made," said Pat.

The Gates are on a crusade to make sure Samara doesn't take another life from another parent. They say there is no closure for them. They've learned to live with a weight on their hearts, hoping for justice and accountability.

Pat and George will bring some friends for moral support in court in Wake County. They have two other children. Their daughter is an assistant district attorney.  She was inspired to become a lawyer to fight for victims, after losing her brother.

The Gates inspired "Stephen's Law" in 2005, which made it illegal for a passenger to get behind the wheel and drive away from a crash before police respond. The driver who killed Stephen was acquitted of hit and run because Samara took over the wheel and drove off.

WFMY News 2

Most Watched Videos