APPLETON - "I'm trying to find it in my heart to forgive you for killing my brother," said an emotional David Weiss in Outagamie County Court Tuesday.
Weiss and other family members spoke directly to the woman convicted of killing their loved one.
PaKou Xiong was texting while she was driving when the deadly crash happened last July.
And Tuesday, she learned her punishment: one year in jail for the death of 46-year-old Jim Weiss, who was killed while bicycling in Kimberly.
"The message needs to be sent. If not, the killing will continue," said Jim's mother, Mary Weiss.
The mother of Jim Weiss asked a judge to send PaKou Xiong to prison for the maximum five years.
"My heart breaks when I think about him hearing her car coming as it hit the curb and in terror he saw his fate," she said.
"I don't know when you have a more negligent type of homicide than this," said Outagamie County District Attorney Carrie Schneider.
Judge Gregory Gill only gave Xiong one year in jail, three months of which she has already served. He also gave Xiong five years of probation. She can't drive without permission from her probation agent and can't have a cell phone.
But during that time, Xiong has to do 100 hours of community service each year speaking to students. But she must do it wearing her jail orange jumpsuit and with it, a pin promoting the stop texting and driving campaign started by the Weiss family.
"That's going to be a reminder when she puts that on and they see her up there and hopefully that will change some lives and save some lives too," said Schneider.
Xiong apologized to the Weiss family and said in court she is already making changes in her life, volunteering in the Hmong community.
"I wish I could take it back, I shouldn't have been texting and driving. Ever since it happened I've thought about it every day."
"I think she is at the right age with the children - I guess the kids, we shouldn't call them children - who are doing the texting and driving, although we all see people of all ages doing it, I think it will have a great impact on them," said Xiong's attorney, Robert Vanderloop.
A message Mary Weiss hopes Xiong will learn and learn to share.
"People do not consider the consequences, some people think that the law is a joke."
Xiong will also have to spend time in jail during the annual Hodag music festival in Rhinelander while she is on probation.
Gill noted the festival was important to Weiss, and being in jail during that time would be a good reminder and time of reflection for Xiong.
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