Simons sentenced in Keweenaw County

EAGLE RIVER – A Calumet man was sentenced to 67 months to 15 years in prison in Keweenaw County Circuit Court Monday for the 2011 accident that killed his friend.

David Simons, 39, was found guilty in January of failing to stop after an accident causing death and driving with a suspended or revoked license in an accident causing death, both 15-year felonies. He was acquitted of operating a vehicle while under the influence – causing death, also a 15-year felony.

Simons also received credit for 506 days served.

On the morning of Nov. 5, 2011, Simons was driving Jeffrey Brusso home when his car ran off the road at a corner on Five Mile Point Road. Brusso, 53, of Allouez Township, was killed almost instantly.

Simons fled the scene and was arrested at his house several hours later.

Simons said he had been guilt-stricken since the incident, and asked God and the Brusso family for forgiveness.

“I will carry those images for the rest of my life,” he said in an audio recording of the hearing. “They will never go away. I’m reminded daily of them, and may God bless everybody that’s been affected by this.”

During the trial, Simons testified he had been distracted at the wheel when Brusso pulled a gun on him during an argument about money Brusso owed him.

Brusso’s wife, Natalie Brusso, said Simons’ accusations were false; there was no debt, the gun wasn’t Brusso’s and he was in too much pain from a recent back surgery to pull it.

But while Brusso had intended to say “horrible things” to Simons Monday, she opted not to, she said.

“With my faith in Jesus, I know I’ll see Jeff again,” she said. “And I pray for you, and I forgive you.”