A West Manheim Township man must report to prison Wednesday for killing his close friend in an alcohol-fueled crash last summer.
Donald Wayne Brady Jr., 23, of Impounding Dam Road, was sentenced Tuesday to three to six years in state prison as part of a negotiated plea agreement.
Common Pleas Judge John S. Kennedy noted the victim's family and prosecutors both asked that Brady serve his time in one of the prison system's "therapeutic communities," although it's up to the state prison system to make that determination.
The mother of 18-year-old victim Joshua Charles Hertz said young people know their choices have consequences, but added she doesn't blame Brady, and doesn't want his life to be ruined because of her son's death.
"I do not want him to base his life on this," Michele Hertz said. "I want him to go on."
The background: Joshua Hertz, of Glenville, was killed July 10 when he was thrown from Brady's Hyundai coupe during a 4:20 a.m. crash in the 700 block of Impounding Dam Road in West Manheim Township, according to court documents.
Hertz died of multiple traumatic injuries, according to the York County Coroner's Office.
Brady was driving home from a local convenience store when his car started to fishtail. He tried to correct it but lost control, according to documents.
Thrown: The car rolled -- possibly several times -- and Hertz, who was in the front passenger seat, was ejected. Officers found him at the bottom of a steep embankment off the east side of the road, West Manheim Township Police said.
At the time of the crash, the car was going about 50mph in a 35mph zone, police said.
Brady escaped with minor injuries, police said; his blood-alcohol level was determined to be 0.15 percent. In Pennsylvania, an adult is driving drunk at 0.08 percent.
Both lost dads: Brady and Joshua Hertz were close friends who bonded after their fathers died, according to Michele Hertz, who approved of the plea agreement.
She said Brady and his family reached out to her after the crash. She and Brady hugged outside the courtroom before Tuesday's sentencing hearing, according to Brady's defense attorney, Sam Gates.
Gates said it's not often he sees the family of a victim forgive a defendant and express real concern for him.
Mom reached out: He said that shortly after the fatal crash, Michele Hertz visited Brady "and asked him if he was doing OK," according to the attorney.
"To me, that was just unprecedented," Gates said. "She realized the relationship her son and Donnie had."
Brady was a student at Shippensburg University but did not return for his senior year because of the crash, his attorney said.
"His major was criminal justice," but that career goal is now unlikely, Gates said. "He's got three years to reflect on his options."
Deputy prosecutor Miranda Blazek has called the case "a difficult situation for everybody."
-- Reach Elizabeth Evans at firstname.lastname@example.org, 505-5429 or twitter.com/ydcrimetime.