Sherman sentenced in DUI case |

Sherman sentenced in DUI case

When Jubal Sherman’s father took the stand at a sentencing hearing in the Douglas County District Courtroom Monday, it was to speak on behalf of his son and apologize to the family of the man killed in a traffic accident Sherman caused last March.

“I have much sorrow in my heart,” Jed Sherman said in Spanish to the family of 23-year-old Marcos Guiterrez, of South Lake Tahoe, while his son tried to hold back tears.

After hearing testimony from Sherman’s parents, as well as the victim’s family – and from Edwin Powers Jr., another victim – Judge Michael Gibbons sentenced Sherman to 14 years in a Nevada State Prison for driving under the influence and causing death or substantial harm.

Sherman, 26, of Carnelian Bay, pleaded guilty to the charge last November. He will serve the time in a minimum-security prison and will be eligible for parole in two-and-a-half years.

Gibbons called Sherman’s actions outrageous and reckless, but said, “You are someone who can make a difference in our community if you choose to.”

Gibbons encouraged Sherman to speak out against drunken driving when he is released from prison and several others spoke out in favor of Sherman telling his story to students.

“You have the potential to be a leader,” said Melvin Laub, an attorney representing the victims. “Speak to the students with all your heart knowing that there is a little girl who is 5 months old who will never know her father.”

Guiterrez’s fiancee, 17-year-old Emily Candelario, said she fears the day she will have to tell her “daughter where her daddy is.” Their daughter, Alexandra, was not born when her father died.

When Sherman addressed the court he could barely speak through his tears, but he managed to apologize to the victims and to his family.

“I just want to do what’s right, and I am not here weeping because I have to go to jail,” he said. “I am so sorry I have brought so much pain and suffering to so many people I don’t know and that I can’t relate to because they don’t know me.”

More than two dozen people were at the hearing in support of Sherman.

Sherman faced a maximum of 20 years in prison but his attorney, Scott Freeman, and Laub both asked the court to impose the minimum two-year sentence.

“He has taken a life and that will be with him for the rest of his life,” Freeman said. “There is no sentence you could impose that would have a greater impact than what he has done to himself.”

Sherman had never been charged with a crime prior to the accident.

Deputy District Attorney Alan Buttell, who prosecuted the case, said it might feel unique but that it was merely one of 109 drunken driving incidents that occurred last year in the Stateline area.

“We have to send a message,” he said. “Not to Jubal Sherman, but to us – to everyone in this room – we can not tolerate drinking and driving.”

“It is pretty obvious this has affected him greatly,” Gibbons said of Sherman, but added that it has affected the victims much more so.

The number of drunken driving fatalities has fallen in recent years but is still a tragic problem, according to Gibbons.

“Just imagine 18,000 people killed across the country each year because of a senseless decision to drink and drive,” he said.

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