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Teen Pleads Guilty in Fatal Crash

Updated: Friday, April 12 2013, 08:10 PM EDT
COLUMBUS — A 16-year-old Hilliard student entered a guilty plea to vehicular manslaughter in Juvenile Court Friday.

Back on August 8, 2012 Trent Burchett was driving his car with four other teens on Amity Road when he lost control of his vehicle.

The car crashed and rolled.  The passenger, 15-year-old David Phillips III, died after he was ejected from the car.

The other four teens survived.

Burchett had only been driving for a few months and according to Ohio law, should not have had the other boys in the car.

He was not familiar with the road and was going over the speed limit.

The judge requested a background investigation before sentencing the teen.

Burchett and his family spoke only to ABC 6/FOX 28 Reporter Carol Luper after the plea.

He said it taught him some lessons: “just realizing how important someone’s life is and how easy it can be taken away.”

He wants the Phillips family to know how sorry he is.

His mother, Rhonda, says “our hearts go out to the Phillips family” and Trent’s father, Mark, echoed that sentiment.

Both parents say they want their son to reflect on what happened, to learn from it and move on.  They say he’s a good person and a good son.

The Phillips family will be able to talk to the Judge on the day of sentencing, which is May 22.

Some of the options the Judge has for sentencing: 90 days in a Juvenile Jail, probation, community service, and having his driver's license suspended until he’s 21.

He is not driving right now.

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Reporter: Carol Luper
Web Producer: Kellie HannaTeen Pleads Guilty in Fatal Crash


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