Woman Gets Unusual Sentence After Fatal Distracted Driving Crash
A judge has barred a Michigan woman from using a cell phone for two years in connection with a fatal crash that resulted from distracted driving.
Mitzi Nelson, 23, will spend at least 90 days in jail, in addition to the electronic device ban after she struck and killed a cyclist with her car.
Clinton County District Judge Stewart McDonald explained on "Fox and Friends Weekend" how he came up with the unusual sentence.
"At the sentencing hearing, I hear from the defendant, the defendant's attorney, the prosecutor and the victim's family," Judge McDonald said. "Most specifically, I heard from the victim's husband, Jordan Byelich. And most of the components of the sentence were sentences or were components recommended by the probation officer. But the cell phone ban was actually requested by Mr. Byelich to be considered. After I considered it, I thought it was appropriate."
Judge McDonald explained that the maximum sentence he could have imposed was one year in county jail.
"If I impose that, I would be ignoring the rest of the requirements that I'm supposed to look at in terms of sentencing: punishment, deterrence, rehabilitation, protection of society. So, from that standpoint, I have to balance the punishment, the penalty with an opportunity to rehabilitate any defendant," Judge McDonald said.
"In this case, I imposed a six-month sentence. 90 days she will serve. The last 90 days was deferred until the end of the period of probation. She can earn, so to speak, an opportunity not to serve that last 90 days if she conforms her behaviors to the requirements of probation over two years."
Watch the "Fox and Friends Weekend" video above.
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