INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. (May 29, 2015) - The father of a young mother of four killed in a crash last August says the sentencing for the killer is "a joke."
Paige Byers, 22, was charged with two counts of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated causing death and two counts of operating a motor vehicle while intoxicated causing death with a blood alcohol concentration over 0.08.
On Wednesday, Byers was sentenced to eight years with four years suspended and three years probation. She’ll spend a year on work release and three years on home detention. In addition, she’ll pay $19,775.23 in restitution and have her license suspended for three years. Part of the deal also includes 80 hours of community outreach.
Byers was charged after she was driving drunk and crashed her car, killing Whitney Miler and her step-father, David Foster. Miller's mother, Marsha Foster, was also in the car, but survived.Court documents showed that Byers told police she went for a drive to “clear her head” after an argument with her boyfriend. Byers admitted she had “three shots of tequila, two shots of rum, and a half of a beer” between 5 p.m. and 8 p.m. at a concert.
FOX59 spoke with Millers father, Paul Miller about the sentencing. He said the court hearing was a joke.
“To get off with such a slap on the wrist for killing two people," Miller said.
He said in court, letters were presented, painting the picture of Byers as a good person, who made one bad mistake. Miller said the crash was no accident and Byers should pay for the mistake that cost his daughter her life.
“My daughter was great, too. Dave was a great guy, too. It’s not fair," said Miller.
According to the Marion County Prosecutors Office, Byers faced a maximum sentence of 14.5 years behind bars. It's not clear why Judge Lisa Borges handed her a lesser sentence.
Miller said his daughter left behind four young children. He's working to keep her memory clear in their heads and honor their mother. To him, the sentencing didn't provide any sense of closure.
“Something needs to be done judicially to make people have to pay for their decisions, their bad choices, especially when it causes death," Miller said. "It’s just a speed bump that’s going to slow her down just a notch.”