Man charged in fatal crash sentenced to nearly a decade in prison

GRANTS PASS, Ore. — A Grants Pass man who hit and killed a local mother was sentenced to nearly a decade behind bars.

46-year-old Freddie Tillett pleaded guilty to manslaughter and driving under the influence of intoxicants. NBC5 News broke the story last fall that Tillett has a record full of driving-related offenses, including four previous DUII’s. After a fatal crash in September killed 39-year-old mother Brenda Reinert, Tillett pleaded guilty to manslaughter and driving under the influence of intoxicants.

“He was traveling in the wrong lane at three times the legal limit and speeding, some of the witnesses say 100,” Tillett said.

On Thursday, Tillett was officially sentenced to ten years in prison, concurrent with nearly a year in jail, followed by three years post-prison supervision.

“From day one, I’ve been guilty,” Tillett said.

Before Tillett was taken away, he apologized to the Reinert family and his own family.

“I didn’t mean for this to happen. Stupid choice of driving. I woke up from my coma and found out what happened and I wish. You know. I just wish it was me, you know? Instead of her,” Tillett said.

Reinert leaves behind her husband and three children. Her family chose not to make a statement or address Tillett in person, telling the DA it would be too hard.

Anna Weeks is the anchor of NBC5 News at 5 and 11 and Your Place @7 with Anna Weeks. She graduated Summa Cum Laude from Oregon State University with a degree in Digital Communication Arts and a minor in writing. Previously, she interned with the National Association of Broadcasters at the NAB Show in Las Vegas. Originally from the Portland area, Anna loves exploring Southern Oregon. In her free time, she enjoys reading, running, and watching sports.
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