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YouTube confession precedes 6 1/2 year sentence

Oct. 23, 2013 at 1:25 PM

COLUMBUS, Ohio, Oct. 23 (UPI) -- The Ohio man who released a video confession for hitting and killing a man while he was driving drunk will serve 6 1/2 years in prison, a judge said.

Matthew Cordle, 22, released a video on YouTube that received more than 2 million hits, confessing to driving drunk outside Columbus June 22. He struck a vehicle driven by Vincent Canzani while driving the wrong way on a local interstate.

CBS News said Cordle will also lose his driving privileges for life as part of his sentence.

In the weeks after the crash, as police were investigating the incident, Cordle released the video, which initially had his face and voice distorted as he talked about what led up to the incident. It ends with his face revealed, admitting he killed Canzani and begging others not to drink and drive.

Judge Davie Fais sentenced Cordle to two years less than the maximum for his crime and at one point during the sentencing encouraged Cordle to continue his anti-DWI advocacy -- while also noting his repentance doesn't absolve him of responsibility.

Addressing the court, Cordle reiterated his grief.

"The true punishment is simply living, living with the knowledge that I took an innocent life," he said. "That pain and weight will never go away."

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