Wrong way driver apologizes to fallen deputy's family - WTOC-TV: Savannah, Beaufort, SC, News, Weather & Sports

Wrong way driver apologizes to fallen deputy's family

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SAVANNAH, GA (WTOC) -

Family and friends of Sgt. Bobby Crapse were forced to relive the tragic moments of the wrong way crash on I-95 that killed him two summers ago.

In court Tuesday, prosecutors played video that was caught on a fellow deputy's dash cam who was following right behind Sgt. Bobby Crapse when wrong way driver Patricia Collins hit him head on.

Judge Timothy Walmsley sentenced Collins to 15 years after she pleaded guilty to vehicular homicide and DUI charges.

It was an emotional day for everyone inside the courtroom. Judge Walmsley even said this is a tragedy that affects both families.  

Not only were people reminded of the hero Sgt. Crapse was, but they also learned about Collins herself.  Before this all happened, the defense said she loved to serve the community.

Collins got on the stand Tuesday, taking full responsibility for what happened. She also asked the Crapse family for forgiveness.

"There is no excuse or reasoning that condones my actions that horrible night," said Collins.

It's been two years since that night on June 15, 2012 when Collins had been drinking downtown, got behind the wheel of her car and drove the wrong way on I-95, crashing head on into a Bryan County Sheriff deputy's car, killing Sgt. Crapse.

"I'm glad of the aches I will always have in my bones for the constant physical reminder they are of my past weakness and it's affect on one man, on both of our worlds," said Collins.

Collins still walks with a cane because she badly damaged her legs in the crash, but she said the emotional pain is far more unbearable because she knows she can't bring Sgt. Crapse back.

"I hope the end of this case can help you and the process of healing," said Collins.  

Judge Walmsley said in court he believed Collins is genuinely sorry, but the Crapse family said they are having a hard time forgiving.

"I'm sorry if that makes me evil," said Sgt. Crapse's mother Becky Crapse. "Her parents have her no matter how long she spends in jail."

Right before Collins met her fate to serve 15 years, Judge Walmsley wanted to remind everyone in the courtroom to learn from this tragic crash.

"I hope this is an example that will be used in our community of the dangers of drinking and driving," said Judge Walmsley.  

The Crapse family said Sgt. Bobby Crapse wouldn't have wanted it any other way.

"We know for a fact Bobby would have rather it been him than anyone else on that road that night," said his father Stephen Crapse.  

Judge Walmsely sentenced Collins to the maximum of 15 years but she only has to serve seven years behind bars and the rest will be probation.

WTOC reached out to the Collins' family for a comment but they declined.

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