Judge adds to manslaughter sentence

A woman convicted of involuntary manslaughter in a fatal traffic accident has received a final, additional sentence after a jury recommended last week that she serve six months in jail and pay a $500 fine.

Circuit Judge Ronald Napier kept the jury’s sentence intact and added several provisions at a hearing Monday. Napier gave Spindle, 26, a suspended sentence of one year in jail and required her to serve a post-release sentence of two years under the supervision of the state’s parole board.

Assistant Commonwealth’s Attorney Bryan Layton said Wednesday that Spindle is scheduled to report to jail to begin serving her sentence on May 20. The post-release sentence was given under a state law governing sentences imposed by judges after a jury has delivered a guilty verdict.

“Basically, it’s an additional suspended portion to keep them on good behavior and the like,” Layton said of the post-release part of the sentence.

The jury found Spindle guilty after hearing two days of testimony about her role in an accident that took the life of her friend, Holly Anne Smedley, 25.

The two women and Jason Louderback were occupants in a Ford F-350 pickup truck that crashed and rolled over on Browntown Road on Jan. 25, 2014.

The truck belonged to Louderback, but he testified at the trial that Spindle was driving at the time of the accident. All three occupants had spent hours drinking off and on at a restaurant before they set off on a drive that ended in the accident.

Smedley died a few hours later at Winchester Medical Center.

Spindle testified at the trial that the accident left her with a serious injury that has prevented her from remembering anything about the crash or the hours leading up to it.

Her attorney, John Bell, argued that some physical evidence at the accident scene pointed to Louderback as the driver.

Contact staff writer Joe Beck at 540-465-5137 ext. 142, or jbeck@nvdaily.com