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Hagerstown man convicted in fatal crash gets 3 years

August 28, 2009|By DAN DEARTH

HAGERSTOWN -- A Hagerstown man wiped away tears Friday as he was sentenced to serve three years in prison following his conviction last week on a charge of homicide by a motor vehicle.

Robbie Eugene Liggett, 36, of 20213 Robinwood Court, Apt. 410, was sentenced by Washington County Circuit Judge Donald E. Beachley to serve three years of a five-year prison term. Two years of the sentence were suspended.

"I just want to say I'm sorry and give my condolences," Liggett said as he addressed the court. "I'm sorry for my family ... I'm sorry for everyone in the room."

Roy James Gordon died April 26, 2008, after his Ford Probe was rear-ended by Liggett's BMW on Interstate 70 west of Big Pool, according to court records

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Liggett's blood alcohol content was .16 percent, Deputy State's Attorney Steven Kessel said.

On Aug. 18, a jury found Liggett guilty of homicide by motor vehicle in connection with Gordon's death.

The courtroom was filled with the families and friends of both parties during Friday's sentencing.

Gordon's widow, Rose, told the court before sentencing that she felt "terrible" not knowing where her husband was on the night of the accident. She said she didn't discover what happened until a police officer showed up at her home.

"It hasn't been an easy road," Rose Gordon said. "My son has nightmares. (Our children) are never going to see Roy again."

Kessel asked Beachley to impose the maximum five-year sentence, saying Liggett was seen drinking alcohol at a Dual Highway nightclub earlier this month.

"This accident has had absolutely no impact on Mr. Liggett," Kessel said. "He just doesn't get it."

The Rev. Thomas Gue spoke on Liggett's behalf.

Gue said Liggett showed genuine remorse when the two spoke after the accident.

"He was weeping and said, 'I don't care what they do to me,'" Gue said.

Liggett's defense attorney, John Salvatore, asked Beachley to suspend a large portion of the sentence in favor of community service.

"This was a case where there was no criminal intent," Salvatore said. "He didn't mean to hurt anyone."

Liggett also was ordered to pay the Gordon family $6,421 in restitution.

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