In an extraordinary display of forgiveness in a Michigan court room on Monday, two families forgave the drunk driver who took their loved ones’ lives earlier this year, WZZM 13 reports.
The Wyoming High School graduate, 18-year-old Takunda Mavima,(pictured) cried through his apologize during his sentencing hearing for causing the accident that killed two of his classmates and passengers, 17-year-old Tim See and 15-year-old Krysta Howell.
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I’m so sorry that I took two bright, intelligent, wonderful people out of this world …. I wish I could… I wish that I…I’m sorry.
According to WZZM, he already “pleaded guilty in August to operating while intoxicated causing death and operating while intoxicated causing injury.”
On May 20, Mavima was driving home from a party with See, Howell and three other classmates when his car flipped into the woods on a highway.
See and Howell died; the other passengers were injured but survived. While many parents would hold anger at the person responsible for their child’s death, a different scene played out in a Grand Rapids court room earlier this week.
At Mavima’s sentencing, Lauren See, Tim See’s sister, urged judge Jim Redford to go light on the recent high school graduate. In fact, she asked that he not be jailed at all.
“I am begging you to let Takunda make something of himself in the real world– don’t send him to prison and get hard and bitter, that boy has learned his lesson a thousand times over and he’ll never make the same mistake again.”
Krysta Howell’s mother, Angel Howell, also asked the judge to spare Mavima a heavy sentence, saying that the tragic accident has encouraged her to raise awareness about the consequences of drunk driving.
The judge, saying that there has to be a deterrence component to Mavima’s punishment, sentenced him to 30 months behind bars. It is the low end of the state’s sentencing guidelines for the crime Mavima was convicted of.
WZZM reports that people at Mavima’s sentencing said he was a fine young man who made a “major mistake.”
CORRECTION: In an earlier version of this article and on Facebook, it was stated that the accident took place in the state of Wyoming. In fact, it took place in the state of Michigan. We apologize for the error.