‘Girls Gone Wild’ Businessman Sentenced In Sunset Strip Fatal Hit-And-Run

BEVERLY HILLS (CBS) — An Australian businessman whose company once distributed “Girls Gone Wild” videos was sentenced Friday to just under a year in jail for a hit-and-run crash that left a 21-year-old woman dead on the Sunset Strip.

Under a plea deal, Ryan Mathew Bowman, 34, was sentenced to 364 days in a private Los Angeles jail facility.

Bowman pleaded guilty to a felony count of leaving the scene of the crash that killed Lauren Ann Freeman as she tried to cross Sunset Boulevard at Hammond Street shortly before midnight Nov. 10.

Witnesses said Freeman was in a crosswalk, ahead of a group of friends, when she was struck by a dark vehicle and thrown about 50 feet. Freeman had been at a concert at the Roxy Theatre and was crossing the street with friends to reach a taxi.

Under the terms of the plea deal, Bowman will also be placed on four years probation after his release from jail and he must complete a nine-month alcohol education program. He was also ordered to have a breathalyzer-like device placed on his automobile for one year.

In addition, a restitution amount to be paid to the Freeman family will be determined, prosecutors said.

Investigators found debris from the front end of a gray-to black-colored Bentley at the scene of the crash, according to Sgt. Chris Tatar. A charcoal- gray Bentley with front-end damage and no license plates was later found parked near La Cienega Boulevard and Melrose Avenue.

Accompanied by his attorney, Bowman surrendered the following afternoon at the sheriff’s West Hollywood Station.

(©2011 CBS Local Media, a division of CBS Radio Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed. Wire services contributed to this report.)

  • Jose Luis Carlos

    Slap on the wrist for a White guy.

    • Duh!

      That’s cause he didn’t try to run back across the border to Mexico.

      • Doy!

        I’m with you, Duh! The truth hurts some folks, doesn’t it?

      • Moe

        you fukkken kkkokkksukkker

  • Bob

    Sentenced to under a year? That’s nothing!

  • Wodering Why?

    This is what is wrong with our “justice” system – there is no justice for victims and their families. US is no better than some of the 3rd world countries!!

  • GG

    You forgot one thing, a rich white guy.

  • angry

    oh shut up with you racist comments. a black guy hit and ran leaving my friend on the Sunset Blvd un-conscience. police found him and they did not even suspend his driver’s license!!!!!!!!!!! They did absolutely NOTHING! and my fiend ended up having a very long recovery and multiple surgeries and trips to hospitals.

    • Doy!

      There are more racist folks than we think, angry. Ed Rooney’s the biggest racist on this forum. Sorry about your friend.

    • Ed Rooney

      Maybe your friend was drunk or high on meth? Blacks never get away with anything if their name is not OJ.

  • Jorge Garcia

    Having $$$$ goes a long way in America.

    21 year old woman dead, white boy gets 1 year in a protected Jail cell.

    White boy probably gets out in 3 months for good behavior.

    Horrifying tragedy for the families & friends of the 21 year old woman.

    1 year Jail time. WoW!!

    • Rich

      It has nothing to do with money. They could not prove he was drunk. Hitting someone with your car is not in itself a crime. By the time he was arrested he would have been sober so the only evidence of anything illegal was fleeing the scene of the crime.

      • Doy!

        Wise words, Rich. Jorge Garcia’s just mad ’cause he hasn’t been legally accepted into the US yet, so he takes it out on us white folks.


    Oh damn! Killing this 21 yo woman gets less time than punching someone in the face. Damn shame.

  • So what!!

    Restitution to be paid to the victim’s family to be determine..

    Will that be in US dollars or Mexican pesos?

  • Tee

    True the hit and run drivers in the killing of the USC student got 8 -9 years. In America money talks…

  • Hex the Italian

    Deport Him!

  • WHY?

    Ok, so this guy gets a year in jail for killing someone but the guy in the below link gets 30 years in jail for killing 2 people? how does that make sense?

    1 killed = 1 year
    2 killed = 30 years

    Am i missing something? i mean, dont get me wrong, I am in no way saying that they should not be punished for what they did & someone died in both of these accidents but you are going to tell me that money doesnt talk? Please.


    • Rich

      That guy was drunk. This guy was smart enough to sober up before turning himself in so they have no proof he was drunk. Hitting someone with your car is not a crime if they cant prove youre drunk. So the only prosecutable crime was fleeing the scene of an accident.

  • joke

    Wow!! 1 year for a hit and run murder.
    That’s outrageous! You get more for possession.

    • Doy!

      Uh, it wasn’t murder, you imbacile. He didn’t intend to hit the woman. He fled the scene and was prosecuted for that.

      • joke

        He knowingly went drunk driving. If that’s not premeditated, I don’t know what is.

  • Pam

    I am astounded at the idiocy of the people writing comments. OMG, how stupid are you? It’s shocking and sickening that this creep is only getting one year for killing someone and then running away. It’s also shocking how stupid and racist and ignorant most of you people are. Incredible.

  • Rich

    Lesson for the Day; If you kill someone drinking and driving, flee the scene and turn yourself in once you are sober. This way rather than facing vehicular homicide they have nothing to charge you with accept fleeing the scene.

    • Ed Rooney

      Good idea!

      • Larry "Bud" Weiser

        Or quickly run into a bar and down a beer. They can’t prove the alcohol in your blood was there before the accident.

  • Claudia Marie Rodriguez

    1 year for a Hit-and-run, that 22 year old Mexican guy in Santa Ana who hit and killed an up-and-coming Angels pitcher got 25 years to life in prison.

    White dude lucky. Plus the fact they will lock him up in a PRIVATE LA Jail.

    I repeat, PRIVATE LA JAIL. He should be out in 3-6 months. Poor 21 yo girl. RIP.

    • Not newsworthy

      The guy who killed the pitcher was 3 times over the limit drunk

      • Oops....

        AND he had a prior…

  • Oops....

    1. I hope the victim’s family approved of this absurd deal. My condolences to them.
    2. How about for restitution, the family is allowed to have as long as they want with this savage in a locked room full of medieval torture devices?
    3. House him with the guy that recently murdered his cellmate.
    4. When his 364 DAYS (still can’t believe the sentence can be measured in days) are up, send him back to AUS and NEVER let him return, money or not!

  • So what!!

    Dude could’ve Raped the woman, ran over her and turn himself in the next day. That way he’s only charged with hit-and-run instead of Rape & doesn’t even have to register as a sex offender.

    Just saying..

  • the wolf

    This guy did get off easy. Sad for the family. The Courts said this to the family of the victim.”Oh well, this 21 yr. old life is not worth much, so this court is going to let this man go. even if he ran at first, like a coward. However he did go back. Sorry, for your lost folks. This is how this court works. we let killers go.Because the prosecutors makes deals with killers.” (then the judge laughs). This is how I see this court room and judge worked this sad case. NO JUSTICE, FOR NO BODY. Not for the family of the 21 yr. old. AND NO JUSTICE FOR THE PEOPLE OF CALIFORNIA! Yeah, if it was an illegal, or a mexican, or a black or asian,person, and poor. Just maybe, It would have been justice for the Family.

  • Seer

    So sad for the family of the young woman. And what a horrible way to die and a horror for her friends to witness. So much pain was done. So many people affected. So many sleepless nights for the parents and siblings. And of course the lost life. Bowman will meet his end soon enough. Mark my words. Karma will wreck his life and the lives of his family. Had he stayed to help, he would have avoided the darkness that will come to him and his family. There is justice in the end.

  • Sam Adams

    He was also drunk at the time, though they can’t pin it on him since he surrendered the next day and wasn’t immediately busted.

  • TeaPAC Patriot

    Had the victim been Mexican the Tea Party would have given Bowman a medal of honor.

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