Wrong way driver pleads guilty to vehicular homicide
Nov 16, 2012 06:24 PM
Rebecca Benson drove the wrong way on I-65 and crashed into a vehicle driven by Steffanie Leonard last February.
Steffanie Leonard, 29, was on her way to work and died on the scene.
NASHVILLE, Tenn. -
An Antioch woman charged in a fatal wrong way crash earlier this year has pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide.
Rebecca Benson's attorney entered the plea in Davidson County court Friday morning.
She received a 10 year sentence and will serve two of those years behind bars. She will be on probation for the remaining eight.
Benson's driver's license will remain suspended for the entire 10-year period.
She must also speak to high school students three times a year for five years as part of her plea deal.
"No matter what the sentence is, it will never be enough because it will never bring my sister, my parent's daughter or my daughter's aunt back," the victim's sister, Jennifer Leonard said.
Benson, 23, drove the wrong way on Interstate 65 on the morning of February 22, 2012 and crashed into a vehicle driven by Steffanie Leonard.
Leonard, 29, died on the scene.
Following the accident, Benson told police she thought she was in a taxi cab.
"It was the best that we could have hoped for in this situation. I think the terms of it are such that we can hope Ms. Benson will have opportunities to impact other people," Jennifer said.
Mother Marti Leonard added, "I know where my daughter is and that is where I receive my comfort, that my daughter is resting in the arms of my Savior and one day I will see her again," mother Marti Leonard said.
She was indicted by a Davidson County grand jury in August.
Following Friday's hearing, Leonard's family told Nashville's News 2 Benson wrote a three-page letter apologizing for what happened.
"I forgive her as a person, I knew that would come, and yes, I did tell her I forgive her. The act itself, the choices they come with consequences," Marti said.