COLFAX, Wash. – Richard Pasma, the man accused of leaving his former girlfriend for dead along the Pullman-Albion Road last November, has been sentenced to nine months in jail after entering an Alford plea earlier this month.
Kristen Grindley was found on Pullman-Albion Road on November 11, 2009. She suffered multiple skull fractures, broken bones, bruises and cuts. It was only after months of therapy that she left a rehabilitation center in Spokane and was able to go home.
In just the last few weeks, Grindley has regained some memory of that night. She told authorities she remembers trying to get into her then boyfriend's truck. Prosecutors alleged Pasma either pushed or saw Grindley fall from the truck and should have alerted medical authorities to her condition after the incident.
Grindley told a Superior Court judge in Whitman County she was the victim of domestic abuse at the hand of Pasma as she urged the judge to sentence him to the highest range of jail time possible.
Pasma entered an Alford plea in a legal move by admitting a jury would probably find him guilty of hit and run related to the case, though he did not admit any specific wrong doing.
The defendant apologized to the Grindley family before being sentenced. He turned to the family behind him and said, "I know you don't think I'm sorry, but I am really sorry."
His mother testified that her son and the rest of the family have prayed daily for Kristen's health since the incident last year.
Pasma has no previous convictions and qualified as a "first time offender" which could have offered a more lenient sentence in the case, but the judge felt that was not appropriate given the severity of Grindley's injuries.
The judge sentenced Pasma to the maximum amount of jail time possible saying anything less would have been, "a slap in the face to Ms. Grindley."
Grindley is walking and speaking again and hopes to regain her drivers license. She is currently unable to work but she hopes to continue pursue a career in the future.
KHQ Local News Reporter Anthony Gomes contributed to this report.
Friday, December 6 2013 2:18 PM EST2013-12-06 19:18:21 GMT
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