Lubbock County Judge: 'The irony is that in protecting you, he w - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

Lubbock County Judge: 'The irony is that in protecting you, he was hurt'

Jesse Tello (Source: KCBD) Jesse Tello (Source: KCBD)
LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) -

Officer after officer filed out of the courtroom Wednesday afternoon after hearing the Judge's sentence for 21-year-old Jesse Tello.

Tello will serve ten years in prison for the crash that forever changed Lubbock Police Officer Corey Owens's life. 

An emotional day for both sides and the judge who acknowledged how crowded the courtroom had become.

He said it was likely the men and women who came in support of Owens are like himself, in awe that on all accounts Owens is succeeding in what he wants to do. 

In May of 2015, Tello said he drank before he got behind the wheel and crashed into Owens's patrol vehicle. 

Owens was outside of the vehicle at the time, directing traffic in a flooded intersection. 

His leg became crushed against the curb and later had to be amputated. 

On Tuesday, Owens took the stand and said despite his injury, it never crossed his mind to do anything else than be a police officer.

In fact, he is working to go back to patrol on the midnight shift, the shift he was on when the accident happened.

It is something that amazes Assistant District Attorney Tom Brummett who prosecuted this case.

"These are genuine heroes in the community. They don't wear spandex, they don't wear colored tights, they wear uniforms and badges," Brummett said.

The judge looked at Tello and said, "The irony is that in protecting you, he was hurt."

This comes after Tello took the stand on Tuesday with his eyes filled with tears as he looked at Owens and his family and apologized for what happened. 

On Wednesday, the judge said this case is rare because unlike most people who stand before him, Tello does not have an extensive history with law enforcement.

On Tuesday, several of Tello's former employers took the stand and used words like reliable, polite, timely, and a leader to describe him.

The judge said it was testimonies like those that influenced his decision to not give Tello a more severe sentence.

Owens's wife, Felicia, took the stand after the judge gave Tello his sentence and forgave him.

"Somebody who took her husband's leg and inflicted this on her family and where they find this wherewithal in their hearts, I don't know," Brummett said.

Tello's attorney released this statement: 

     On behalf of Jesse and his family, we could not be more sorry for Jesse's actions. The judge said it best, this was a horrible tragedy that will forever affect two families.We respect the difficult decision Judge McClendon had to make in this case.

Copyright 2017 KCBD. All rights reserved.

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