Driver sentenced for hitting group of cyclists in Cleveland

CLEVELAND – A driver who plowed into a group of bicyclists on Cleveland’s east side apologized to the victims before being sentenced to more than a year in prison.

Rondell Dungy, 27, admitted to being under the influence of alcohol at the time of the June 3 crash on St. Clair Avenue near East 108th Street.

Crime scene photos released after Wednesday’s sentencing hearing showed mangled bicycles and damage to the front corner and windshield of the vehicle Dungy was driving. Of the five victims, prosecutors said three were seriously hurt, including one who still has difficulty walking.

“This is going to be an ongoing problem,” Assistant County Prosecutor Carson Strang said. “This is going to be a lifetime of dealing and coping with the ramifications of what the defendant did to them that day.”

The crash occurred around 2:30 a.m., but the victims’ bicycles were well-lit, according to Strang.

Last month, Dungy pleaded guilty to three counts of aggravated vehicular assault, a weapons charge for having a gun in his vehicle, and DUI.

Dungy, who has no prior felony convictions, said his behavior that night was out of character.

“I'd like to say to the victims, ‘I'm sorry. I apologize for my actions,'” he said in court, admitting he should not have been driving. “If I could look over to them right now and just apologize, and they could see how remorseful I am, I would do it.”

Judge Michael Shaughnessy sentenced Dungy to one year in prison on the aggravated vehicular assault charges and an additional six months in prison on the DUI charge. He also issued a $1,075 fine and suspended Dungy’s license for 10 years.

“I hope that in the future you recognize your mistakes and you learn from them,” Shaughnessy said.