Judge orders 1 year for negligent homicideA judge sentenced a Hebron man charged with negligent homicide to five years in jail with all but one year suspended during a hearing at the Stark County Courthouse on Tuesday morning.
A judge sentenced a Hebron man charged with negligent homicide to five years in jail with all but one year suspended during a hearing at the Stark County Courthouse on Tuesday morning.
Clinton Beau Neidhardt failed to stop at a stop sign at 83rd Avenue Southwest, causing Timothy Dean White, 45, of Hebron to strike Neidhardt’s vehicle in July 2010. White was driving a motorcycle and was killed while Neidhardt was uninjured and arrested for driving under the influence.
“This is by far the toughest case that I’ve ever had to go through, because there are no winners,” said Judge William Herauf. “I don’t want to end up destroying two families out of the deal.”
White had three children at home and since their mother had died of an aneurysm several years ago, the children were orphaned, his family members said in April. They moved in with family members after the crash.
Neidhardt also has two teenage children, his attorney Kevin McCabe said after the hearing.
“They’ll still live there, I’m sure with the mother on the farm,” McCabe said.
White’s family members said in April they wanted Neidhardt to face more severe charges so he would spend more time in jail.
“You can well imagine the family is very distraught,” Stark County State’s Attorney Tom Henning said after the hearing. “Their take on it is he (Neidhardt) had destroyed a life and a family.”
In April family members expressed frustration over what they felt was a lack of prosecution.
“When I listen to the Whites and talk to the Whites, I understand exactly where they’re coming from — what is the price of a life when the cause of it is arguably caused by somebody’s criminal negligence?” Henning said.
However, Herauf, Henning and McCabe agree negligent homicide was the best charge for the scenario.
“He feels bad for what happened,” McCabe said. “He wishes he could take it back, but he can’t.”
Neidhardt had consumed alcohol the night before the crash, slept through the night and awoke not realizing he was still intoxicated, McCabe said.
“His position is that people that use that road feel it’s a dangerous intersection,” McCabe said. “They want the county to look into it.”
He added the visibility is bad in the area of the crash.
Neidhardt plans to apply for work release while he’s in jail, McCabe said.
“I want to see that you’re able to work,” Herauf said. “I want to see that you’re able to take care of your family.”
Herauf also wants Neidhardt to address his alcohol consumption.
“I do think you have a problem,” Herauf said.
After he serves a year at the Southwest Multi County Correction Center in Dickinson Neidhardt will be on supervised probation.
Herauf said Neidhardt’s history was taken into account when sentencing him.
“Not only is there no criminal history, there’s not even a traffic ticket,” Herauf said.
Neidhardt was charged with driving under the influence, but it was dismissed, according to court records.