A Pierce County judge handed a 10-year prison sentence Tuesday to a man who went on the run for more than a month after causing a car crash that killed a well-liked Boeing Co. employee earlier this year.
Jason Hoke, 33, pleaded guilty in June to vehicular homicide and leaving the scene of a fatal wreck.
He admitted he was at the wheel of a car that collided head-on with a BMW driven by Douglas Davis the morning of March 3. Davis, 57, died at the scene. The crash occurred on Waller Road East and 46th Street East.
Hoke, who already had a criminal record, ran away after the wreck and wasn’t arrested until April.
Davis’ widow, Becky Davis, told Superior Court Judge John McCarthy before the sentencing that the crash had robbed her of her best friend and the love of her life. She described her husband as an intelligent and kind man who served his country in the armed forces before signing on with Boeing.
His dream was to finish restoring a 1964 Ford Mustang and drive it to Chicago along Route 66, Becky Davis said.
“He loved fixing things and making them work right,” she said.
Becky Davis said she didn’t know if she ever could forgive Hoke.
“That’s my weakness,” she said.
Greg Davis told McCarthy he feels cheated by the untimely death of his older brother.
“This man didn’t have a mean bone in his body,” Greg Davis said. “I don’t wish this feeling upon any human being.”
Hoke’s attorney, John McNeish, said his client most likely fell asleep at the wheel the morning of the wreck then “just panicked and ran.”
Hoke then was given a chance to speak.
“It was a terrible accident, and I take full responsibility for my actions,” he said.
McCarthy then adopted the 10-year sentence recommended by McNeish and deputy prosecutor Tim Jones.
“There is absolutely no bright light I can see from this,” the judge said.