Before Nathan D. Pfaffenbach was taken away to begin a prison sentence for the drunken-driving crash he caused, the Blasdell man turned in the courtroom and apologized to his two victims.
"I can't express how sorry I am. I have a family as well, and I'm just very sorry," he told Kyle and Lea Golden. "I hope that some day that you'll forgive me."
Under a plea deal accepted by the Goldens, State Supreme Court Justice John L. Michalski ordered Pfaffenbach to spend the next one to three years in state prison and pay $1,020 in court fines and fees.
Pfaffenbach was arrested following an early morning crash June 28 on Route 5 at the Evangola State Park entrance in Brant.
Kelley A. Omel, chief of the Erie County district attorney's Vehicular Crimes Unit, told the judge that when police finally forced the defendant out of his crashed vehicle uninjured, he drunkenly told officers that the high-speed chase "was the most fun he had ever had."
Omel told the judge that Pfaffenbach, who registered a blood alcohol reading of 0.18 percent -- more than twice the state's legal limit -- had drunkenly veered across four traffic lanes before crashing into the Goldens' car.
Omel told the judge both Goldens are still receiving medical treatments and therapy for their crash-caused injuries.
Herbert L. Greenman, Pfaffenbach's attorney, told the judge his client "has accepted responsibility" and was the one who insisted on his guilty plea Oct. 28 to aggravated vehicular assault and drunken driving.
Greenman said Pfaffenbach "was tragically wrong" to try to self-medicate himself with alcohol to deal with his clinical depression.