How A Former Disney Star Killed A Woman
He drove drunk and killed a woman, but still ended up on the big screen.
Millions of children and teens in the 2000s grew up watching the largely popular Disney Channel. They ran home each and every day from their long day of learning to watch their beloved shows before having dinner with their family. Children around the globe were obsessed with the channel and the shows that it aired.
At the channel’s peak, it was bringing in over 45 million viewers each and every week. Shows like The Suite Life of Zack and Cody and Jessie grasped the attention of children all over the world.
Children and teens, alike, looked up to the stars and characters that were portrayed on the shows that they watched.
One of these characters was Mr. Moseby from The Suite Life of Zack and Cody. The character that was adored for his humor and wit, he was played by actor, Phill Lewis.
Although Lewis was seemingly perfect from the exterior, a dark event in his past still lingered.
The day is December 28th, 1991. People from all over the world were still in the Christmas-time spirit. One of these people was Phill Lewis.
Lewis had been out that night at a bar with some of his friends from college. Before he knew it, Lewis had guzzled down five drinks. Then, another five. And finally, five more drinks for a grand total of fifteen alcoholic beverages.
After Lewis drank his last drink, his drunk-self decided that it was time to go home and go to sleep. Lewis hopped in his car and drove home.
As Lewis was approaching a stop sign, he made the choice to completely disregard the stop sign and plow through it. In the process, Lewis collided head-on with a 21-year-old woman named Isabel Duarte.
Duarte was a recent immigrant to the US from the country of Portugal. That night she had just finished dropping off her friends at their homes after a night of watching movies and hanging out by the fire.
When police and EMTs arrived on the scene, they found an unconscious Isabel Duarte and a bruised Phill Lewis. The EMTs attempted to rescue Duarte, but it was already too late. She was pronounced dead at the scene.
One year after the Christmas-time incident, that left a completely innocent woman dead, Lewis was convicted of manslaughter and sentenced to one year in prison with 10 years of community service and alcohol abuse treatment.
After serving his light sentence, Lewis went on to create an astonishing acting career for himself. He starred on shows like The Suite Life of Zack and Cody and other award-winning movies and television shows.
Although time has gone by, Lewis continues to be haunted by the incident and will for the rest of his life.
One stupid decision caused the death of a completely innocent person. From this incident, we can learn that life goes on and redemption is possible even after a terrible mistake.