From a handwritten letter by victim's mom - CBS snapshotNot many convicts consider themselves blessed, but Eric Smallridge does, and for good reason. He’s getting out of prison — way early.

A few years into his sentence of 20 years, a woman came forward and asked the judge to reduce his sentence.

She claimed Eric was truly sorry for what he’d done and deserved leniency. The judge obliged — partly because of what she said, but mostly because of who she was.

She was the mother of one of two youths killed by Eric’s drunk driving.

(WATCH the video below, or READ the story from CBS’s Steve Hartman)

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