Driver going to prison in Penn Hills death of teen friend

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A 23-year-old woman whose speeding led to the death of a teenage friend was sentenced to one to two years in state prison Tuesday.

LaKisha Ward-Green of Penn Hills was ordered to prison for the Sept. 3, 2010, death of Robert Chambers IV, 16.

According to the prosecution, Ms. Ward-Green was driving 75 mph in a 35-mph speed zone on Stotler Road in Penn Hills near Robert's home on a Friday afternoon. He was a front-seat passenger in her car. A vehicle pulled out in front of her, causing the young woman to swerve into oncoming traffic. She hit a school bus and then crashed into a pole.

Ms. Ward-Green pleaded guilty to involuntary manslaughter before Allegheny County Common Pleas Judge Jeffrey A. Manning.

During an emotional hearing Tuesday, Robert's grandmother and father complained that neither the defendant nor her family ever offered any apology for what happened.

"I don't see any remorse," said Cheryl Johnson. "I have to forgive her, but I haven't forgotten what she did."

Robert Chambers III told the judge Ms. Ward-Green was 22 when the accident occurred, and that she should have known better than to be driving that fast.

"I don't believe she intended to kill my son," he said. "Whatever happens today, it doesn't bring Robert back."

Ms. Ward-Green apologized to the family, telling them she hadn't spoken to them before because her attorney told her the criminal case had to conclude first. "It wasn't something that was intentional, and I think about it every day," she said, crying. "I've wanted to talk to them every day."

As part of her sentence, she must talk to young people about the dangers of irresponsible driving.



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