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Chevy Chase woman sentenced to over three years for fatal hit-and-run

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A Chevy Chase woman was sentenced to nearly four years in prison Tuesday for the deadly 2010 hit-and-run of a woman in Dupont Circle.

Jorida Davidson, 31, showed little expression as she sat next to her attorney while D.C. Superior Court Judge Lynn Leibovitz gave her three years and nine months, the maximum sentence allowed. When Leibovitz asked Davidson whether she wanted to address the court before the sentence was issued, Davidson declined.

Davidson was found guilty of negligent homicide, driving while under the influence and leaving the scene after a collision in connection with the death of Kiela M. Ryan, 24, of Howard County. Ryan was fatally struck by Davidson’s Lexus sport-utility vehicle early in the morning of Oct, 7, 2010, after Ryan exited a parked car.

Davidson’s case remains open. During her trial, the jury was unable to reach a unanimous verdict on the most serious charge, voluntary manslaughter. As a result, prosecutors re-filed the manslaughter charge and added an involuntary manslaughter charge.

On Monday, Leibovitz granted prosecutors’ request for a new trial over the objections of Davidson’s attorney. If found guilty of the charges, Davidson would face up to 30 additional years in prison. She also faces deportation to Albania, her home country.

Davidson’s attorney, J. Michael Hannon, argued that his client was not intoxicated when she left the scene. Instead, he said, she left after the post-traumatic stress syndrome she developed from growing up in a war-torn country was triggered by the accident.

Hannon said he plans to appeal the sentence and the decision to retry Davidson. Leibovitz said she would wait to schedule proceedings in the new trial until the appeal is ruled on.

Davidson’s sister sat on one side of the courtroom. Ryan’s family and friends filled four rows of the other. Through tears, Ryan’s parents, older sister and brother urged Leibovitz to give Davidson the maximum sentence.

“I’m so angry that she’s not here,” said Frances Ryan, Kiela’s mother. “I’m so hurt. I don’t understand how the rest of the world goes on when a mother loses one of her children.”

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