Motorist who caused death of five-year-old and father sentenced to 37 years in prison

The O'Donnell family was honored at Robinson Community School in 2017 with a bench and statue in memory of Bridget and Tim O'Donnell.
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The O'Donnell family was honored at Robinson Community School in 2017 with a bench and statue in memory of Bridget and Tim O'Donnell.

Scott Hahn, of Hamilton Township, was sentenced to 37 years in prison by a Hudson County Superior Court judge on May 23 for his responsibility in a 2016 NJ Turnpike car crash that resulted in the death of a 48-year-old an and his five-year-old daughter.

In March, a jury found Hahn guilty on all six counts related to the crash that took the lives of Bayonne resident Timothy O’Donnell, and his daughter Bridget, on Feb. 22, 2016. It took the panel less than a day to reach a verdict in a trial that lasted more than a week.

That day, Hahn hit O’Donnell’s vehicle from behind at a toll booth at Interchange 14C of the NJ Turnpike while traveling 53 miles per hour. The crash was so severe that Assistant Chief Prosecutor Leo Hernandez said during his opening statement that it sent the victim’s car into oncoming traffic and caused injuries to Timothy, including cracked ribs on both sides and the severing of several major arteries that led to his near immediate death. Bridget died a short time later en route to Jersey City Medical Center.

Her mother, Pam O’Donnell, has become an advocate for safe driving and has since launched the Catch You Later Foundation in honor of Timothy and Bridget.