Saturday, May 25, 2002

Victim forgives driver for wife's death

Jury convicts on vehicular homicide count

By Sheila McLaughlin,
The Cincinnati Enquirer

        MASON — After being convicted Friday in the crash that killed 87-year-old Sarah Josephson at Cedar Village last January, Edward Traurig got the forgiveness he wanted.

        As he shuffled out of the courtroom on his walker Friday, a frail Louis Josephson embraced the man who had run him down and killed his wife of 69 years at the retirement center.

        “I am so sorry,” Edward Traurig wept as he faced, for the first time, the 93-year-old man he hit with his van in the lobby of Cedar Village last January. “I forgive you,” Mr. Josephson said in a shaky whisper.

        “Thank you,” Mr. Traurig replied, still weeping. “May you have peace in your life.”

        Mr. Traurig, a 65-year-old lawyer from Oak Park, Mich., was sentenced immediately Friday after a jury spent three hours deliberating on a misdemeanor charge of vehicular homicide in the death of Mrs. Josephson.

        Municipal Judge George Parker suspended nearly all of a 150-day sentence, ordered Mr. Traurig to spend five years on probation, and suspended his driving privileges for just as long. He also ordered Mr. Traurig to pay a $750 fine.

        Mr. Traurig faced a maximum six months in jail, a $1,000 fine and a five year license suspension.

        Mr. Josephson said he thinks the sentence was just, but that he feels sorry for Mr. Traurig despite the circumstances. “I've gone through more than that. But, I thought he should get a little sympathy from somebody,” Mr. Josephson said later outside court.

        Mr. Traurig lost control of his van in the circular drive in front of Cedar Village about Jan. 30, and drove 80 feet into the lobby, striking the Josephsons.

        “He just wants to do his time,” defense lawyer Herbert Haas said. “He feels a great sense of relief and gratification by the warm remarks by Mr. Josephson.”


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