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Man sent to prison for hitting, killing 2 on Detroit street

DETROIT – A man convicted of blowing a stop sign and causing a crash that killed two people has learned his punishment.

Brian Ruffin was sentenced Thursday to 4 to 15 years in prison after being convicted of two counts of reckless driving causing death.

Ruffin hit Dennis Marshall, 52, and Jennifer Robinson,42, last October as they were walking near Cortland and 14th streets on Detroit's west side. The two were friends who worked security for clubs in the city.

Ruffin turned himself in after the crash, but filed a false police report claiming that he was carjacked. Before his sentencing, Ruffin told Judge Cynthia Hathaway that the Ford Explorer he was driving had bad brakes.

“I’m sorry. It wasn’t intentional. I didn’t know the brakes were going to go out. I wouldn’t have gotten in the truck if I knew," he said.

Hathaway said she recognized that Ruffin didn't intend to kill anyone, but his extensive criminal history helped get him to where he is now.

“Since 14 years old, it indicates to me that you have been trying to get to prison. And you’ve arrived at your destination today," Hathaway said.

Both victims left behind children.

“I’m praying and I’m asking God to put it in my heart to forgive, because this is something I will never forget," Robinson's sister, Capreasha Philson, said. “Not a day goes by that I don’t think of my sister and wish that she was here. She had five wonderful children.”

Ruffin will also be spending the first years of his child's life in prison because his fiancee is pregnant.