Jessica Skaggs, the 34-year-old New Bedford woman who struck 14-year-old Greater New Bedford Voc-Tech student Skyla Romano with her car back in January, will not be serving jail time.

Skaggs, who left the scene of the accident before later turning herself in and was unlicensed at the time of the accident, was sentenced Tuesday in New Bedford District Court to six months at the Bristol County House of Corrections, but suspended the sentence for two years. Skaggs must pay a fine of $550 and lose her license for one year, and also serve 100 hours of community service.

The sentence did not sit well with her father, Aaron "Murdock" Lynk, who became very emotional when addressing Judge Bernadette L. Sabra.

"My daughters' life has changed forever. She's never going to be the same. My life has changed forever, I am never going to be the same," Lynk said. "All my dreams and all my hopes for my family are destroyed and gone, because of somebody like her, who thinks that she can get away with this."

It is alleged that Skaggs struck Romano in the Bliss Corner area of Dartmouth on January 5th at about 5 p.m., as Romano was attempting to cross Dartmouth Street. Witnesses said two cars stopped to allow Romano to cross, but Skaggs swerved around them and hit the girl.

"I don't want the court to let her go today. I want her to spend jail time. I don't care if she's in recovery or not," Lynk said. "The fact of the matter is, if she did it that night, she will do it again, unless she is taught a lesson. Obviously, she hasn't been taught a lesson."

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