Drivers jailed after crash that killed Relic developer

Erin Wood says “The first thought when I wake up in the morning is ‘he’s gone,’ and the last thought before I fall asleep is the same.”

She’s referring to her husband, Brian Wood – a developer with Relic Entertainment, who was killed in a car accident late last year. Facing an oncoming vehicle driving towards him, reports state that Brian turned his car in such a way that his side of the vehicle would take the full impact. This act may have saved the lives of his wife Erin and their unborn child, Sierra Grace.

Brian Wood and his wife Erin

Brian Wood and his wife Erin

Now, two women in that oncoming car have been sent to prison for their part in the crash, which also killed two passengers in their vehicle.

Jordyn Weichert and Samantha Bowling were found to both be steering the Chevrolet Blazer, which lost control and slammed into Woods’ station wagon last September.

Weichert was found guilty of multiple felony charges, and has received eight years behind bars, just six months shy of the maximum imposed by the state. Front-seat passenger Bowling faces five years inprisonment, after pleading guilty to three counts of vehicular homicide (and an unrelated drugs charge). Bowling’s plea saw a vehicular assault charge dropped, but her sentence was still above the standard range.

Allegedly, the September incident unfolded when Weichert felt warm while driving and decided to remove her sweater. Rather than pulling over to the side of the road, Weichert asked Bowling to steer the car on the highway. According to reports, Bowling then let go of the wheel before Weichert had re-grabbed it, prompting the car to drift off of the road. Both women jerked the steering wheel to the left, which caused the car to veer into the oncoming lane and collide with Woods’ vehicle.

Bowling suffered a fractured hip, and her boyfriend Jacob Quistorf was killed, as was Weichert’s partner Francis Malloy. While her unborn daughter was unharmed, Erin Woods was seriously injured, and states that, most days, she wishes she had never been pulled out of the car.

Friday’s hearing was – by all accounts – an emotional one, where Island County Superior Court Judge Alan Hancock “struggled with his emotions”, despite being known for his restraint and professionalism.

[img_big]center,1285,2010-11-17/relic00447.jpg,Company of Heroes Online[/img_big]

Brian Wood was Senior Designer on the Company of Heroes franchise for Relic Games. Since his death, the company has launched the Brian Wood Memorial Trust to raise money for Erin and Sierra, as well as the Brian Wood Memorial Game Design Internship, which sees graduating Game Design students at Vancouver Film School given the opportunity to work with Relic.

Source: [surl=]Everett Herald[/surl], [surl=]Seattle Post-Intelligencer[/surl]

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