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Vehicular homicide charge added after Trooper Ellen Engelhardt died

WAREHAM, Mass. — A man who admitted he was drunk when he hit a state trooper in 2003 pleaded guilty Wednesday to elevated charges he faced when that trooper died years after the accident.

William Senne spent two and a half years behind bars after the Wareham crash that left trooper Ellen Engelhardt in a vegetative state.

Senne was 18 at the time. Engelhardt was pulled over in the breakdown lane of Route 25 with her blue lights on while investigating an earlier crash and Senne was driving 100 mph, according to prosecutors.

When she died in 2011, he faced an additional vehicular homicide charge.

Watch report

“Just as he always has been, Billy Senne remains deeply remorseful for the terrible tragedy that took place more than 10 years ago,” according to a statement released in Senne’s behalf. “Billy hopes that by once again tendering a plea to the court, Trooper Engelhardt’s family will find some degree of closure.”

Prosecutors wanted Senne sentenced to an additional four to five years, but said Engelhardt’s family did not want him to serve additional time.

Prosecutors said Senne is a danger to the public because following his release after his first conviction, he was involved in a crash and had two speeding tickets.

Senne, 29, was also sentenced to 500 hours of community service at a facility that treats people with brain injuries and lost his license for 15 years.

District Attorney Timothy Cruz said Senne will be on probation for the next three years.