Man freed after waving scythe, stealing truck jailed in deadly DWI crash
Two weeks before Philip Cise, under the influence of painkillers, drove his truck into a jogging North Jersey teen, he'd had other run-ins with police.
In one, he waved a scythe at a woman outside a Rockaway McDonalds. In another, he stole a truck in Jefferson County.
But both times, he was released from jail, raising questions about whether authorities could have kept him off the streets before Cise, with a history of mental instability, caused the crash that killed Gabrielle Reuveni, NorthJersey.com reports.
When Cise's bail hearing in crash was held, he was already in the Somerset County Jail — accused of harassing workers at Donald Trump’s Somerset County golf course for a 9/11 memorial that may not exist, according to the report.
He was sentenced Thursday to three to six years in state prison for the Pike County, Pa. crash, on a charge of homicide by vehicle while under the influence. He could be out in a year, because he received credit for time served in a Pennsylvania prison.
"While many of us are disappointed by the relative light sentence that Cise received for killing Gabrielle we must all accept the outcome, move forward with our lives and be kind and loving to one another," Reuveni's family wrote on a Facebook page dedicated to her memory. "Nothing will bring Gabby back, but if we all smile more, love more, and be kinder to others we can honor her memory."
The family continued: "The Pennsylvania Judge can only sentence Cise according to the laws of the state. It is strange that in this country a person caught with marijuana can be given a minimum of 10 years but homicide by vehicle while DUI can get only 6 years. It was the NJ courts that gave Cise a pass every time he was arrested and it was the Rockaway Borrough police department that didn't bother arresting him after he waved an ax at the local McDonald's. Thank you all for your continued love and support you help us heal and we are eternally grateful."