SANFORD - A judge today sentenced hit-and-run driver Thomas Resh to one year in prison for a fatal crash a year and a half ago that k!lled a 13-year-old boy as the teenager roller-skated across a busy Altamonte Springs road.
David Nesbitt Jr. was crossing State Road 434 in a crosswalk at dusk Dec. 28, 2005, when he was k!lled.
Resh didn't have a driver's license but was driving his roommate's SUV when he ran over the boy. He then fled the scene, made repairs to the SUV and disappeared for several days.
According to state sentencing guidelines, Resh should have been sentenced to a minimum of 12 years in prison. a.ssistant State Attorney Stewart Stone had asked for the maximum -- 25 years.
However, today Circuit Judge O.H. Eaton Jr. gave a far more lenient sentence. He ordered Resh to a year in jail followed by five years of probation.
In an order explaining his sentence, the judge wrote that except for the fact that Resh didn't have a drivers' license, fled the scene and tried to repair his vehicle, the crash was simply a terrible tragedy caused by neglect.
Resh had run a red light.
The judge also wrote that Resh suffers from mental problems and, as a consequence, he "operates on the level of an elementary school child."
The boy's mother was in court today. Laura Fleming said one year in prison is not nearly enough to make up for the loss of her son.
"I'm not happy. I'm not happy with the judge at all. He (Resh) took my son's life and all he gets is a year?"
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