Stephen G. Smith, who was known as "Stash" on 98 Rock, pleaded guilty Monday morning to drunk-driving charges and was sentenced to six months in the Harford County Detention Center.
District Court Judge Susan Hazlett reduced the original one-year sentence after Smith's lawyer said Smith immediately took part in a 28-day alcohol treatment program and admits he has a drinking problem.
She also placed him on supervised probation and required him to abstain from alcohol.
Smith, a Bel Air resident, was involved in a three-car crash at Route 24 near the I-95 intersection July 22 that sent five people to the hospital with minor injuries.
As a result of the charges, he was fired from 98 Rock after more than 20 years working in radio.
On the night of July 22, Smith tried to throw a can of Four Loko, a controversial alcoholic beverage, out of his car and denied having alcohol in the car before eventually admitting to it, Assistant State's Attorney Trenna Manners said.
"What we have here is a string of horrific decision-making," Manners said, citing his traffic history, including 56 payable tickets and a marijuana arrest.
Hazlett called his record "lousy," noting 32 prior convictions for traffic offenses.
Smith's lawyer, Leonard Shapiro, said his client had done a lot of good in the community, including charity through the radio station, and is committed to turning his life around.
"He loved his job and a lot of people liked him and followed him," Shapiro said. "Whether he can resurrect that or not remains to be seen."
Shapiro said Smith, who has five children with his wife, relapsed into drinking from the stress of dealing with his severely autistic son.
On the night of the accident, Smith's wife found him intoxicated at home and told him to leave the house, which is when he drove off, Shapiro said.
"He has made a complete mess of everything and he knows that, and he could have hurt other people," Shapiro said.
Smith appeared contrite and personally apologized to the victims of the crash, who were sitting behind him.
"Alcohol has taken over my life," he told them, apologizing for making it part of their lives, too.
"I apologize deeply to you and I think about it every day," he said of the crash. "I apologize to my family with all the publicity that was involved."
The victims of the accident told the court the crash was far from "minor" and hoped Smith would be prevented from hurting others in the future.
They noted he did not have car insurance at the time of the crash.
Joshua Stavrakoglou, of Baltimore, said his car was hit so hard the trunk ripped a hole in his pants and he was "almost completely crushed in."
He said the anxiety he suffers as a disabled combat veteran was exacerbated by the accident.