Tiffany Pittman denied shock probation, will remain in prison

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Reporter - Lauren Adams
Photojournalist - David Dycus

MARSHALL COUNTY, Ky. - A young woman convicted of killing a man while driving under the influence is asking for her second chance at freedom.

Tiffany Pittman filed a motion for shock probation last month, and a judge denied that motion on Friday. The ruling means Pittman will remain in prison.

Last December, Pittman was found guilty in the death of 46-year-old Jimmy Harper. Pittman was driving under the influence when she crashed into Harper in August 2011. Harper, a father of two, was on his way to work. Pittman was sentenced to 15 years behind bars.

Pittman arrived in court and almost immediately began crying.  She is also visibly pregnant.  Pittman and her boyfriend of five years are expecting a son August 20th.

The baby was conceived while Pittman was supposed to be receiving mental health counseling before her trial.

Pittman explained her actions to the judge saying, "I felt like I wasn't breaking any rules, if that makes sense."

She added, "I obviously didn't intend to get pregnant, by no means but I did."

Circuit Judge Dennis Foust held Pittman in contempt of court.  Commonwealth Attorney Mark Blankenship recommended Pittman receive more jail time and re-reimburse the Commonwealth for expenses related to the pregnancy and delivery while she is incarcerated. Foust said he will make his decision in the days ahead.

Blankenship also encouraged the judge to deny the motion for shock probation saying doing so "lessen the severity of this crime."

For her part, Pittman told the judge she believed she survived the wreck for a reason adding, "I have every intention of doing good in this world."

Judge Foust admitted he was 'torn' but denied her request.  Jimmy Harper's family said they were grateful for the ruling.

Harper's son, Tevan admitted, "I think everybody deserves a second chance but that doesn't mean she should start her second chance right now."

Tiffany Pittman will be eligible for parole in about two years, after serving 20 percent of her sentence.  She could file another appeal but her lawyer, Jamie Jameson said Friday that was unlikely.

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