LINCOLN — The Delaware fugitive responsible for a traffic crash that took the life of a 2-year-old Bellevue boy said he was sorry Tuesday, moments before he was sentenced to 300 days in jail.
The parents of Aidan Curry said his words sounded hollow.
“He said he was sorry for our loss, but he never apologized or took responsibility for anything,” said Jennifer Brock, the boy’s mother.
Brock and her husband, Jeff Curry, expressed disappointment that a judge didn’t give Leamond Pierce the maximum sentence of one year in jail for misdemeanor motor vehicle homicide. With credit for 175 days served since his August arrest plus good time credit, Pierce will complete his sentence Thursday, according to jail records.
He will then be held on a detainer from Delaware, where he is wanted for violating parole. Pierce, 54, was on parole for a 1981 murder in Wilmington, Del., and was not supposed to have been outside his home state when the 2011 crash occurred.
Johnette Graf, an analyst with the Delaware Board of Parole, said after Pierce is returned, he will first undergo a preliminary hearing. He will likely go before the parole board, although it could take several months before he appears.
The board has several options, ranging from returning him to prison or putting him on work release or intensive supervision.
“In this particular case, the likelihood of Mr. Pierce being re-paroled is highly unlikely,” she said.
Pierce was behind the wheel of a semitrailer truck on Dec. 3, 2011, when he struck the rear of a Toyota Camry on a snow-covered stretch of Interstate 80 near Waverly, Neb. The collision killed Aidan and injured his father. The boy’s mother and sister were not injured.
Prosecutors showed that Pierce was exceeding the 55 mph speed limit seconds before the crash and was driving too fast for the snowy conditions. On Tuesday, they argued for the maximum sentence.
Lancaster County Judge Susan Strong said several factors, including the weather conditions, contributed to the crash. In addition to the 300 days in jail, she ordered a fine of $500.
Pierce also suggested Tuesday that his professional training actually saved the lives of three of the four people in the Toyota, Brock said. “He placed the blame on us during his pitiful excuse for an apology,” she said.
A jury of six people convicted Pierce last month after a weeklong trial.
After Lancaster County Attorney Joe Kelly charged Pierce last summer, Pierce fled from Delaware authorities. He was arrested nearly three months later in Illinois.