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Man sentenced in girlfriend's death

CONYERS - The 19-year-old charged in the death of his girlfriend after she was accidentally crushed by a front-end loader made an emotional apology to the girl's family before being sentenced last week to three years in prison.

Kyle Blake Holland of Social Circle was given 10 years with three to serve on a charge of involuntary manslaughter, with a consecutive sentence of five years probation for theft by taking. He was also ordered to undergo mental health counseling and earn a GED.

Kerri Mincy, a 16-year-old from Monticello, was killed Sept. 30 after Holland and three other teens - Cody Lee Smith, 17, Tony Joe Burnett, 19, and Jeffrey Cantrell, 18 - went to the Stanton Springs Technology Park off U.S. Highway 278 and decided to take several pieces of construction equipment for a joyride.

Mincy, a junior at Monticello High School, was riding on the side of the front-end loader when Holland, who was driving, encountered a steep grade that resulted in the vehicle flipping over. Mincy was trapped beneath the equipment.

According to Alcovy Judicial Circuit Chief Assistant District Attorney Layla Zon, friends and family of both Mincy and Holland listened as Holland offered an emotional apology.

"He indicated he cared tremendously for this young lady, and repeatedly said "I'm sorry,'" Zon said. "There was a lot of emotion in the courtroom. It was a very difficult case for both sides and both families."

Colin Stewart can be reached at colin.stewart@rockdalecitizen.com.