PITTSBURGH (KDKA) – A man convicted on two counts of homicide by vehicle while DUI will serve up to 14 years in prison.
According to the Allegheny County District Attorney’s Office, Judge David Cashman sentenced Edward Cass III to seven to 14 years in prison, followed by seven years probation.
Judge David Cashman sentences Edward Cass to 7 to 14 yrs. in prison and 7 yrs. probation for August 2017 fatal accident on Golden Mile Highway in Plum Borough that killed Beth Ann Beveridge and Michael Clarence Zier.
— AlleghenyCountyDA (@AlleghenyCoDA) September 24, 2019
The violent crash happened on Aug. 6, 2017 on Route 286 in Plum Borough near Pine Valley Plaza.
Police say Cass had fentanyl and THC in his system when he hit another car head-on.
Beth Beveridge, 43, was driving with her daughter Libbie and Libbie’s boyfriend — 17-Year-old Michael Zier.
Both Zier and Beth were killed.
KDKA’s Meghan Schiller talked to the victims’ family members and one woman who is still recovering.
Friends and family tell KDKA that they’ve waited two years for this day.
“I think he should have gotten a little bit longer but it felt really good to see him get handcuffed in that courtroom today,” said Libbie, who was left without her mother and her boyfriend after the crash.
Libbie said she remembers the crash that killed her mom and boyfriend vividly because she was also in the car. Soon she’ll undergo another jaw surgery and recently endured surgery on her pelvis. Her mother died behind the wheel just a few days after her birthday.
“Actually every time I’m in a car at night and I see bright headlights, I continuously see the accident. I was diagnosed with PTSD whenever I went to therapy,” said Libbie.
When asked if she accepts the suspect’s apology, she said, “I don’t think he’s sorry because accidents like these — I’ve read so many accidents like these — and everybody claims that they find Jesus but they mess up again and do it again, so I think he’s just going to do it again.”
Libbie’s boyfriend, junior firefighter Michael Zier, was also in the accident.
Zier’s two sisters said they appreciated Cass’s apology, but it’s not enough.
Victim’s Sister, Katherine Zier: “He turned around and he said ‘I’m sorry’ and I believe that he is, but it still –”
Victim’s Sister, Courtney Garritano: “It doesn’t bring him back.”
Victim’s Sister, Katherine Zier: “It won’t ever bring anything back.”
“We see our brother in a box for holidays and the last two years he got to sit around his table and be with his family. We have to talk to our brother in a box,” said Zier.
Libbie said she hoped he would have received a longer sentence, but said it was “very satisfying” to watch him be handcuffed in the courtroom.
Cass had his hearing Tuesday morning and was convicted by a non-jury trial.