A Gambrills man was ordered yesterday to spend a year in jail as the driver in an automobile crash that killed the 11-year-old son of a man who supplied drugs and alcohol to his children and their friends.
Anne Arundel Circuit Judge Ronald A. Silkworth sentenced Gregory D. Bostic to 10 years in the death April 26, 1998, of Eddie Cordova, but suspended nine years of the term. The jail term will be followed by five years of supervised probation.
A year in jail was the most that the 21-year-old Bostic could receive under an agreement in which he pleaded guilty in February to automobile manslaughter, which has a maximum sentence of 10 years.
"It's very hard to talk about what happened and I'm very very sorry for what I've done," Bostic told Silkworth.
Terms of his probation include 250 hours of community service and no alcohol consumption.
"Incarceration is going to have a very big impact -- a year for a young man his age is a lot," said George S. Lantzas, Bostic's attorney.
In addition, he said, his client understands that he could serve the remaining nine years if he does not meet the terms of probation, and unlike the one year to be served in the county jail, the longer sentence would be in state prison.
"There is a significant amount of jail time facing Mr. Bostic once he gets out should he violate the law," said Kristin Riggin, spokeswoman for the state's attorney's office. "The one year is consistent with the state guidelines."
Lawyers in the case would not elaborate on a reference to Bostic's juvenile record, which is confidential. He also had driving infractions before the fatal crash.
Lantzas sought work release for Bostic -- a request turned down by Silkworth and one that Kathy Michaels, mother of the dead boy, told the judge she considered inappropriate.
Michaels said she did not think one year in jail was punishment enough for causing a death.
Eddie was living with his father, Edward E. Cordova, at the time of the accident.
Cordova is serving an eight-year sentence after admitting last year that he turned homes in Odenton, Gambrills and Severn into settings for drug and alcohol parties.
Bostic had left Cordova's home with Eddie, Eddie's sister and her friend to go to a 7-Eleven store. He had consumed some of a 40-ounce container of beer, and his blood alcohol level nearly two hours after the crash was .05 -- under the .10 level defined in Maryland as legally drunk.
Bostic detoured to a dangerous curve on a hill on Chesterfield Road in Gambrills. The curve, known as "the End of the World," has a 20-mph speed limit. Police estimated Bostic's vehicle was going between 54 mph and 61 mph when it became airborne.
Bostic lost control when the car landed. It crossed the road, smacked into a tree and rolled over. None of the occupants was wearing a seat belt, and Eddie was ejected.
Cordova had denied contributing to his son's death.
Michaels, divorced from Eddie's father, described a son much different from the child police and prosecutors said had marijuana, a tranquilizer, and enough alcohol in his system at the time of the crash to be considered drunk.
She spoke of an academically talented boy, a former Cub Scout, a child with an inquisitive mind, who was able to walk away from a fight and who knew right from wrong.
"He was my sunshine and I would sing that to him when I rocked him to sleep," she said.