Mother fights early release for hit-and-run driver who killed her son

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PAINESVILLE, Ohio -- A Painesville mother is fighting against a judicial hearing request by the hit-and-run driver who killed her son.

Christine McCarthy says life was going well for her 27-year-old Scott Thomas Hollifield.  He had a loving girlfriend and was proudly serving his country in the National Guard, but on a cold night in November 2016 he was struck and killed by a hit-and-run driver in Barberton

Police later found and arrested 39-year-old Carl Sapper for the crime.

In 2017 a judge sentenced Sapper to three years in prison, the maximum for a third degree felony.

Now, McCarthy is pleading that a Summit County judge doesn't let the driver who killed her son to get out of prison early.

Sapper is requesting to be released from prison after only serving 18 months, half of his 36 month sentence.

"He left someone laying on the freezing ground. Part of Scott's body broke his passenger side window on his car," McCarthy said.

McCarthy is heartsick at the possibility that Sapper even has a chance of early release from behind bars.

"It's inconceivable to me and I hope that other people would feel as strongly as I do, that if it was their child and somebody took them off of the face of the earth and mortally wounded them, to spend only 18 months, 19 months in jail -- no this is a travesty of justice," McCarthy said.

McCarthy said Scott's family, friends and colleagues from the National Guard will fill the courtroom during Sapper's hearing. She hope's the judge rules to make Sapper finish is entire prison sentence.

"At least he would be finishing his sentence and at that time he can go into that re-entry program and get himself cleaned up," McCarthy said.

Sapper is due in court in March for his judicial release hearing.

Continuing coverage, here.

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