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Matthew Kostanski to be jailed for 2011 crash that killed Hatfield teen

— A Greenfield man driving the vehicle that killed an 18-year-old Hatfield woman who was a recent graduate of the Pioneer Valley Performing Arts Charter Public School in September 2011 has been sentenced to six months in jail and probation.

Matthew Kostanski, 24, of 193 High St., pleaded guilty this week in Holyoke District Court to possession of marijuana, motor vehicular homicide, negligent driving and marked lanes violations.

District Court Judge Maureen Walsh sentenced Kostanski to 2½ years with six months to serve for the count of vehicular homicide. He received an additional six months for negligent driving to be served concurrently.

On Sept. 11, 2011, Kostanksi was driving south on Route 116 in Sunderland about 6:45 p.m. when his vehicle drifted into the northbound lane, striking an oncoming car and killing the driver of that vehicle, Emily Weston, 18, of Hatfield.

According to police at the time, Kostanski said he was traveling to a friend’s house after dinner when something unexpectedly hit his car. He told police he never saw the victim’s car before the collision.

After the crash, police found two backpacks in Kostanksi’s car containing about five ounces of marijuana.

The case was originally scheduled to be held in Greenfield District Court. Due to close personal ties between the Kostanksi family and Northwestern District Attorney David Sullivan, Judge William Mazanec III and Greenfield District Clerk-Magistrate Kenneth Chaffee, and to ensure an impartial trial, the case was transferred to Hampden County.

Sullivan said he considered Kostanki’s father, William, an owner of Kostanski Funeral Homes Inc. of Greenfield and Turners Falls, a close friend.

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