The drunk driver who ended the lives of a Neosho man and his eight-year-old granddaughter no longer has a lawyer.
According to McDonald County Circuit Court files, on Feb. 21 Judge John LePage approved Neosho attorney Anne Wells' motion to withdraw as Edward Meerwald's attorney.
Meerwald is another one of those who pleaded guilty, agreed to a sentence, then found out he did not care for the prison accommodations and sued for his freedom.
Meerwald, 52, Noel, pleaded guilty March 8, 2005,to two counts of involuntary manslaughter in connection with the deaths of Jim Dodson, 68, and Jessica Mann, 8, but filed a motion to have his seven-year prison sentence set aside.
Meerwald was drunk on July 30, 2004, when his car left Highway 86 and hit Mr. Dodson and Miss Mann as they were standing in Dodson's driveway.
The deaths led to a successful effort by Sen. Gary Nodler, R-Joplin, to pass a bill increasing sentences for drunk drivers convicted of involuntary manslaughter.