Natasha Pettigrew death: Christy Littleford sentenced in 2010 hit-and-run

Littleford, who was sentenced Friday, said she thought she hit a deer and not a person in September of 2010. Photo: Prince George's County Police

The woman who was convicted in a 2010 Upper Marlboro hit-and-run crash that killed a United States Senate candidate will spend just less than year in prison after being sentenced Friday.

Christy Littleford, who was found guilty of leaving the scene of an accident after the September 2010 crash that killed Natasha Pettigrew dead, received a 4-year sentence, but Judge John P. Davey suspended three years of it. Littleford will spend 364 days behind bars.

Littleford, her family and the family of Pettigrew, a Green Party candidate for Senate, all cried in the courtroom as Judge Davey handed down the sentence. She told the court she was "truly sorry" for what happened.

At the time of the crash, Littleford claimed she thought she had hit a deer; instead, though, she hit Pettigrew at about 5 a.m. on the morning of Sept. 19, 2010 as she rode her bike while training for a triathlon.

Despite claiming that she thought she had run over an animal, prosecutors say that it took four hours for Littleford to realize that she hadn't hit a deer. Prosecutors say she contacted authorities long after going home once she discovered a mangled bicycle under her Cadillac Escalade.

Pettigrew, 30, was on leave from studying law at the University of Miami while running for Senate.

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