The jury also found Cory Henderson guilty of DWI, hit-and-run and serious injury by motor vehicle.
Prosecutors say Henderson killed 28-year-old Eddie Ogburn in an accident in the early morning hours of August 30, 2009 as Ogburn was turning left into the entrance of his subdivision on Old Wake Forest Road.
Two passengers were also in Ogburn's Jeep Cherokee and injured.
On Friday, Henderson surprised the court by suddenly entering guilty pleas to DWI, felony hit-and-run, and felony aggravated serious injury by motor vehicle. About an hour later, he withdrew those pleas. He did not enter a plea on the second-degree murder charge - a tactic apparently aimed at getting the jury not to convict him on that charge.
During the trial, Raleigh police testified that Henderson was drunk and fighting at a bar just before the crash. They said they told him not to drive, but saw him take off anyway.
As they tried to catch up to him, he crashed into Ogburn's car and then ran into some nearby woods before they caught him.
Hours later, Henderson's blood-alcohol was still five points over the legal limit.
Henderson was sentenced to 36 years and one month behind bars.