On Wednesday, a Beaver Township woman was sentenced in Mahoning County Court for her involvement in a fatal accident on I-680. 

Jayce Klink, 24, was sentenced to 12 months in prison, a 5 year license suspension and ordered to pay $500 in restitution to one of the victims. 

On the night of Dec, 2. 2020, witnesses said they saw Klink drive the wrong way up the exit ramp off of Marshal Street, continuing south in the northbound lane, swerving to miss other cars and ultimately crashing head on with a blue Chevy Impala. 

The passenger of the Chevy, Tiara Whatley, died in the accident. 

“Our family has been broken so bad. Our relationship that we had is not the same as it used to be,” Keith Whatley, father of Tiara said. “Christmas, holidays, none of them are the same because Tiara is missing.”

Tiara’s sister, Sharinda Whatley, the driver of the car sustained severe injuries. They were both driving home from a family member's funeral that night. 

Due to her hospitalization from the accident, Sharinda said she wasn’t able to attend her sister's funeral. She continues to have hip and leg pain even after multiple surgeries and several rounds of physical therapy. 

Sharinda spoke in court, calling Klink’s actions that night selfish and careless.

“She’s looking as if she's the victim, no remorse. I've never seen an ounce of remorse,” Sharinda said. 

Klink addressed the judge just before her sentence was handed down asking for no prison time.  

“There's not a day that goes by (that) this doesn’t weigh on my mind. I wake up everyday thinking about it and I wish that I could go back somehow and change the outcome of that night and I wish that I could take away this family's pain and their suffering,” Klink said.  

Klink and her lawyer argued that it was dark the night of the accident and the area is not well marked. 

“I’m familiar with that intersection. I know what it’s all about, the on ramp and the off ramp being so close together. I can see where an inexperienced driver could make the mistake that Klink made,” Judge Anthony Donofrio said. “On the other hand, driving a vehicle is a tremendous responsibility. Drivers must be extremely vigilant while operating a vehicle.”

Klink and her lawyer motioned to delay her transportation to the jail and begin serving time on Monday so that she could say goodbye to her son. The judge denied that motion. 

Klink’s lawyer said they don't plan to file an appeal.