Man Sentenced To 8 1/2 Years For Drunken-Driving Crash That Killed Tow Truck Operator

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UPDATED: Friday June 28, 2013 6:28 PM

A man who pleaded guilty to causing a crash that claimed the life of a tow truck driver in 2012 was sentenced to 8 1/2 years on Friday.

Thomas G. Frederick, 59, was behind the wheel of a vehicle that crashed into a tow truck along I-71 on Sep. 29, 2012.

William Houck, 60, was killed in the crash. Houck was the tow truck operator who was hooking up a disabled vehicle at the time of the crash.

Frederick pleaded guilty to aggravated vehicular homicide and an OVI charge.

Before being sentenced, he stood before the family of Houck and offered an apology.

“I do not want another family to go through the hurt and the suffering I have put your family through.  Again, from the bottom of my heart, I am so sorry. I wish it had been me instead,” said Frederick.

Frederick admitted he had a problem, but said he has since changed his ways.

Despite that, Houck’s family said it will never bring back this father and grandfather, who was himself a recovered alcoholic.

“A man who had spent so many years recovering from drinking, had been taken down by the thing he protested the most,” said Houck’s daughter Jessica Houck.

“He did everything he could to keep drunks off the road. And his life should not have ended this way,” said Houck’s co-worker Jim Shriner.

“He was always there for his kids and a friend to many. I will miss my dad for the rest of my life,” said Houck’s daughter Katherayne Stansbery.

Prosecutors said that Frederick's blood alcohol level was three times the legal limit.

The judge sentenced Frederick to the maximum time in prison for the charges of aggravated vehicular homicide and operating a vehicle intoxicated.

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