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'Disgusted': Ariel Young's family, attorney respond to MO Gov. Mike Parson commuting Britt Reid's sentence

Ariel Young family
Posted at 2:11 PM, Mar 04, 2024

KANSAS CITY, Mo. — The family of Ariel Young is "disgusted" by Missouri Gov. Mike Parson's decision to commute Britt Reid's prison sentence, according to the family's attorney.

Ariel was seriously injured when she was 5 years-old, after Reid's pickup truck collided with two vehicles in February 2021.

In November 2022, Reid, 38, pleaded guilty to felony driving while intoxicated, causing serious physical injury; but on Friday, Missouri Gov. Mike Parson announced that he commuted Reid's sentence.

Reid will now serve what remains of his sentence on house arrest until Oct. 31, 2025. He was released from the Maryville Treatment Center into house arrest of Friday, per jail records.

Tom Porto, the attorney of Ariel Young's family, released a statement in response to Parson's decision.

"The family is disgusted, I am disgusted, and I believe that the majority of the people in the state of Missouri are disgusted by the governor’s actions," Porto said. “If you drink and drive and you put a little girl in a coma, you should have to serve the entire sentence that a judge of this state gave you."

Ariel's mother, Felicia Miller, asked, “How would the governor feel if this was his daughter?”

“It seems the laws don't apply equally to the haves and have-nots,” Miller added. “The haves get favors. The have-nots serve their sentence.”

In a statement released on Saturday, Jackson County Prosecutor Jean Peters Baker said the family of Ariel Young and those involved in the case were not contacted by Parson before he made his decision.

Peters Baker said she believed Reid's sentence was "just" and "was an example for others that even those with resources and privilege were not above the law."