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No contest plea in fatal crash

Becky Vargo • Jul 21, 2015 at 12:52 PM

Steven Paul Spencer entered a "no contest" plea this morning in Muskegon County Circuit Court.

Judge William Marietti said that would be treated as a guilty plea.

Spencer was charged with operating while impaired (drugs), causing death after the June 16, 2012, crash on Heights Ravenna Road west of Ravenna.

Shumaker and his daughter, Madison, were returning home from a rained-out softball tournament in the area when Spencer pulled out to pass another vehicle and struck the Shumaker car head-on.

John Shumaker died at the scene. Madison suffered minor injuries.

The maximum penalty for the charge is 15 years in prison.

Spencer was originally scheduled to go to trial, but decided to make the plea after an agreement made with the judge to cap the minimum end of the sentence at three years and four months.

Shumaker's wife, who was present in court with her daughter, Madison, said once the sentence is completed, the healing can start.

Sentencing was set for Aug. 13.

Spencer remains free on bond.

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