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Virginia teenager sentenced to six months in fatal crash

July 14, 2020 GMT

ROANOKE, Va. (AP) — A Virginia teenager will serve six months in jail for a fatal wreck in 2019 that killed a friend, court officials said Tuesday.

Robert Author Smith, 19, pleaded no contest in Roanoke County Circuit Court to one count of reckless driving, The Roanoke Times reported. An involuntary manslaughter charge was dropped as part of a plea agreement.

Smith was driving his father’s pickup truck on May 31, 2019 when he drove the car into a sharp turn at an intersection that caused the truck to flip, Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Bill Braxton said, who said two backseat passengers were ejected from the truck.


Aaron Chilson McNair, 18, who was riding in the bed of the truck, suffered a traumatic head injury and died at a hospital, Braxton said.

Circuit Judge Charlie Dorsey sentenced Smith to 12 months, which will be suspended after he serves six months. Smith will be allowed to continue his college education while serving his sentence intermittently.

Smith apologized to the court and to McNair’s family.