HONOLULU (KHON2) — A Nanakuli family that lost a teenage son in a hit-and-run incident seven years ago has spent a lot of that time lobbying for tougher laws against drunk driving. On Monday, May 22, the family of Kaulana Werner was back in court to get justice and commit the selfless act of forgiveness.

In a plea deal, 29-year-old Myisha Armitage pleaded guilty to negligent homicide and causing an accident involving death or injury. In return, she was sentenced to 18 months of jail time which she had already served and five years probation. She apologized to the victim’s family in court.

Check out more news from around Hawaii

“Please believe me when I say how deeply and truly sorry I am for taking Kaulana away from you. For failing to come to you on my own to apologize,” she said.

Kaulana’s parents told the judge that all they wanted was for Armitage to accept responsibility.

“Myisha, we forgive you,” they said, as they gave her a hug.

In April 2016, Armitage was driving drunk when she ran over and killed 19-year-old Kaulana Werner.

Since then the Werners have succeeded in helping pass Kaulana’s law, which extends the maximum sentence for hit-and-run drivers. Armitage was actually found guilty of negligent homicide in 2019 but the verdict was thrown out on appeal.

The most important thing for the family right now is that they can move forward. They said it’s something Kaulana would have wanted.

“Putting her in jail ain’t gonna bring Kaulana back. I just hope that she can go out and bring awareness out there,” said Ed Werner, Kaulana’s father.

“I don’t know how to say it appropriately, but Kaulana saved me. I don’t know if I can explain what I mean and I don’t mean to hurt you more with what I’m trying to say but he saved me,” said Armitage.

The judge told Armitage that she is getting a second chance with this plea deal. So he’s counting on her to honor Kaulana by making good use of it.

“His short life has brought about great and good change in this world. That torch has now passed to you, carry it proudly with the courage that I know that you have,” said Judge Paul Wong.

“This was something our son would’ve done too. He would’ve forgiven her a long time ago and we’re no different from him,” said Ed.

Get Hawaii’s latest morning news delivered to your inbox, sign up for News 2 You

As part of her plea deal, Armitage is not allowed to drive during her five-year probation.