CLEVELAND -- A man who stole a truck, fled from police and then crashed into several vehicles at a busy Cleveland intersection has been sentenced to six years in prison.
A judge sentenced Eldridge Colvin, 65, of Euclid in the July 15 crash that left one teenage victim severely injured.
Prosecutors say Colvin stole a van from W. 6th and St. Clair and ditched it at East 9th and Broadway in order to steal a truck.
Police located the stolen truck and pursued Colvin. Colvin ran a red light at East 79th and Kinsman and crashed into five vehicles.
A 15-year-old passenger in one of the vehicles was hurt when a chunk of sandstone from the stolen truck crashed through the passenger window. The teenage girl suffered major head trauma, a fractured jaw, eye socket fractures as well as neck and back injuries.
The girl, now 16, did not appear in court. But she wrote a letter to the judge which was read in part to Colvin. In the letter, the girl says her family has to live with the results of his actions every day. The teen says she is constantly asked by strangers to explain what happened to her face. She told Colvin, in the letter, she could have avoided all the physical and emotional pain if he simply had stopped for the red light.
Colvin has a long record of similar criminal activity. He pleaded guilty on September 9 to robbery, aggravated vehicular assault and grand theft.
Judge Kathleen Sutula told Colvin he was "a menace to our community," during sentencing. She also suspended his driver's license for life. Judge Sutula noted during the sentencing that Colvin has not had a valid driver's license in 25 years.