(Rochester, N.Y.) -- Former Greece Police Officer Nick Joseph has been sentenced to 3+ to 7 years in prison. He could have received up to 26 years.
Joseph was found guilty on seven charges in March, including leaving the scene of an accident, driving while impaired by cocaine, and possession of cocaine.
All were related to a hit-and-run accident on Route I-390 that caused Alexis Sharp to deliver her baby 14 weeks early. Sharp's baby, Azaria Green, spent 93 days in the hospital after an emergency c-section delivery the night of the accident.
At Joseph's sentencing Tuesday afternoon, Judge Affronti said the evidence against Joseph was "overwhelming and staggering."
"Any law abiding citizen would have remained at the scene. You (Joseph) consciously fled in the dead of night, knowing exactly what you were doing. You were speeding, drank alcohol and ingested cocaine. Your flight constitutes the most egregious transgression that evening. That flight in my opinion was the epitome of selfishness. You only cared about yourself," the judge said. "You obviously did not commit just one solitary error in judgment." Affronti says Joseph's acts were "extreme and calculating."
The judge said he "did not accept or believe your [Joseph's] amnesia defense...those defenses were preposterous, and you never considered the welfare of those you left behind."
Sharp; her boyfriend, Taron Green; and their baby were in court Tuesday. The couple is angry at Joseph.
"Walking away knowing he left injured people...is a disgrace and he is a coward," she said.
Azaria weighed less than two pounds and spent three months on a ventilator. She is doing well despite some challenges.
Sharp asked the judge to give him "nothing short of the maximum."
The baby's grandmother, Robin Sharp, said, "His time will never suffice the time that she's got because her time is lifetime. His time would have been something to at least give us some kind of completeness."
Green also addressed the court, saying, "The pain he has caused my family, we cannot describe. Not knowing if [Azaria Green] would live or die."
Joseph's Attorney Lawrence Andolina said they have received tons of letters supporting his client.
"Joseph has been punished. He lost his job, his health care, and can no longer support his family," Andolina said. "The measure of a man isn't one incident, it's what one has done over the course of his life."
Joseph told the court his remorse is "overwhelming."
"I'm 44 years old. I never hurt anyone in my life. It's devastating...I have deep remorse. Every day I pray for the Sharp family," he said.
He was taken away in handcuffs.
Outside the court, Al Joseph, Joseph’s father said, "Good judges make bad decisions, and that is what happened here. He is a good judge, he made bad decisions. That's my opinion. And that's the reason we have an appeals court."
The Greece police actions in this case and others are under scrutiny by a grand jury.