Widow asks for leniency for woman who killed her husband

Abby Marie Zoellmer, 37, of Mankato, had five mugs of beer and then got in her car and started driving last January.

She struck and killed William Maher, 88, who had gone into the roadway to avoid the ice of the sidewalk.

Then Zoellmer drove off, but turned herself in the next day.

She pleaded guilty to felony criminal vehicular homicide in July and yesterday she returned to court for sentencing.

“I have no anger toward her about the accident,” Barb Maher, William’s widow, told the court, according to the Mankato Free Press.

After apologizing and promising to get her life back on track, Zoellmer received a series of stayed sentences, which satisfied Mrs. Maher. She didn’t want the woman to go to prison.

“That doesn’t improve her chances of being a good citizen,” she said.

The widow said she was happy to learn that Zoellmer was granted work release and a long probation sentence that will give her incentive to stay a good citizen.

“We were just caught in a tragic situation,” Barb Maher said. “We just have to accept it.”