CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - The man involved in a deadly motorcycle chase with police admitted his guilt before a judge Tuesday morning.
This was an accident that didn't have to happen. John Zurlo was going 97 miles an hour on his motorcycle on I-480 in August with Staci Elder as his passenger. He sped past a police cruiser. There was a short chase, but Zurlo wouldn't stop.
The wild ride ended here. Zurlo had gotten off at West 150th Street. Even while not being chased, he was driving like a madman. He lost control, hit a sign and ended up crashing on this lawn. Staci was killed, Zurlo injured.
He came to court on Tuesday using a cane and claiming he was sorry, that he loved Staci. He left out his long criminal record, his previous stints in prison and the fact that he was drunk.
"Your honor I loved Staci very much," said Zurlo. "I spent every minute of every day with her."
"He doesn't understand what he did," said Staci's friend Kim Reidance. "I don't think he's remorseful. I think he's spoiled and that's all I have to say."
"Our job as parents it to keep our kids alive. Grandparents, parents and it's tough," said Judge Richard McMomagle. "People like you don't make it any easier."
Judge McMonagle took several minutes to review Zurlo's long criminal record before sentencing him to eight years on a vehicular homicide charge and four years for running from police. A total of 12 years behind bars. And a message to anyone who doesn't simply pull over.