Editor’s Note: An earlier version of this story incorrectly stated where the suspect is from, we regret the error.
OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – A Texas man won’t spend any time in prison in Oklahoma for killing a person while driving drunk after a judge accepted his plea deal.
The suspect, Steven Sherman, entered a plea of “no contest” on Monday morning when he appeared before the judge and the victim’s family who have waited seven years for justice.
The case dates back seven years. It was April of 2016 when 27-year-old Tyler McWhorter was hit head on along the Turner Turnpike.
There was a lot of emotion in the courtroom on Monday morning. Several of the victim’s family members were there and were devastated after hearing the judge accepting the plea deal of a 12-year suspended sentence for 42-year-old Sherman.
He hasn’t spent time in jail since the incident and the family says the justice system has failed them.
Steven Sherman was seen walking hand in hand with his wife on Monday morning, and moments later, leaving the courtroom after receiving a 12-year suspended sentence. It is something the victim’s family is not happy about.
“I’m about half sick… This is a terrible miscarriage of justice,” said Michael McWhorter, victim’s father.
Father of the victim, Michael McWhorter, said his son Tyler was hit and killed by a drunk driver back in 2016.
Troopers say Steven Sherman was driving in the wrong direction of the Turner Turnpike when he hit Tyler head on.
Sherman’s blood alcohol level was more than twice the legal limit (.17) the night of the crash. He bonded out immediately on a $150,000 bond and hasn’t been back since.
“He has never even looked at me in seven years. He’s not once looked at me or any of his family have offered any remorse whatsoever. Say you’re sorry, Condolences. Not one time… We’ve been going up here for seven and a half years and got no justice for Tyler,” said McWhorter.
This case has taken over seven years, was overseen by 11 judges and includes one mistrial.
“I have never seen nor been participating in any case that has had so many motions, so many actions for something that is straightforward,” said Kirk Martin, Oklahoma assistant district attorney.
The Assistant DA prosecuting the case, Kirk Martin said there are a number of reasons for the delays.
“The state has to reevaluate evidence continually… We have gone through many judges and the ability to ensure a victorious jury trial with all 12 being able to find him guilty is always a possibility. And when one person finds the individual not guilty, we start all over again,” said Martin.
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In court on Monday morning, Martin made it clear the state agrees with the plea deal.
“After the length of time, this case deserves to have some resolution,” said Martin.
But did not say why the state didn’t seek any prison time.
Defense Attorney Jacqui Ford said she believes the case was flawed from the beginning.
“If there’s someone to be upset with, it’s the investigators who failed to properly investigate this case and failed to properly turn over evidence in a timely fashion… This case has been cursed from the beginning,” said Jacqui Ford, Defense Attorney.
Assistant DA, Kirk Martin told KFOR he will continue to follow Sherman’s sentence while in office and personally when he is no longer there.
If Sherman gets in trouble again, Martin says he’ll ensure every opportunity is taken to revoke the plea deal.