A Benton City man was sentenced to 13 years in prison Tuesday for a crash that killed a Hermiston mother last year.
Ty A. Moore, 31, admitted to driving drunk and blowing through a stop sign in a Buick Regal on Highway 397 near East Bowles Road in Finley on Oct. 23, colliding with a Toyota Camry.
A passenger in the back seat of Moore’s Buick, Fawn J. White, 34, a mother of four, was thrown from the car.
Moore, who has several previous convictions, including a sex offense, pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide.
“There’s nothing that can bring Fawn back, there’s nothing that can go back and change what happened that night,” said Megan Killgore, deputy prosecutor. “But I’m glad Mr. Moore is taking responsibility for what happened that night.”
White’s 3-year-old son was with her in the back seat of the Buick when the crash happened. Moore’s guilty plea included a sentencing enhancement that the child was under the age of 16.
The boy, an unnamed front-seat passenger in the Buick and the driver of the Camry were treated at a hospital.
State troopers said Moore appeared to be under the influence after the crash. He smelled like alcohol and had bloodshot eyes.
Moore claimed after his arrest that he is schizophrenic and not competent to stand trial. However, a psychologist found Moore was faking mental illness to avoid trial.
Staff at Eastern State Hospital, where Moore was admitted to be evaluated, observed him asking other patients the best way to get his criminal case dismissed, a report said.
White’s family wrote letters to the court sharing memories of their loved one and expressing sadness over her death.
“I get up and go through each day pretending to be happy as the world rushes by me,” wrote Donna Pulliam, White’s aunt. “I stay stuck grieving her loss in silence.”
A cousin, Michelle Pulliam, wrote that White won’t be there for her three daughters’ 16th birthdays or get to see her boy’s first day of kindergarten because of the choice Moore made to drive drunk.
“There is no way to clearly express the feeling of irreplaceable loss that we are all suffering,” she wrote. “All I know is that tears keep coming and my family and I are all experiencing devastating pain and anguish.”