Miller pleaded guilty Monday to involuntary manslaughter and criminal trespass for his role in the death of 27-year-old Jones, a camera assistant who was struck by a train on February 20, 2014 while filming a "Midnight Rider" scene set on railroad tracks. Miller's attorney admitted in court that the director did not receive permission from train operator CSX to shoot on the tracks that day.
Deadline reports that Miller entered a plea deal with prosecutors that stipulated he be "sentenced to two years in prison, 10 years probation, $20,000 fine and 360 hours of community service to be served in California. Under the terms of the probation, he also agreed not to serve as director, assistant director or supervisor in charge of safety on any film production."
Miller's plea deal also meant that charges against his wife, producer Jody Savin, were dropped. Miller and Savin's attorney, Ed Garland, told reporters that he expected Miller to serve about 12 months of his two-year sentence.
Jones's parents, Richard and Elizabeth Jones, were in court for Miller's sentencing Monday, and told reporters that they were satisfied with proceedings. Per Deadline:
Deadline also reports that Miller's sentencing sets grim history in Hollywood, making the director "the first filmmaker to go to prison for a film-related death." The last time filmmakers were charged with an on-set manslaughter was in the 1980s, when director John Landis and four others were tried for the deaths of three actors -- including Vic Morrow and two children -- during the production of "The Twilight Zone." Landis and his co-defendants were all acquitted.
"No one won anything today," [Richard Jones] said. "It's just a great deal of loss for everyone involved." Asked if he was happy with the result, he said: "I hesitate to use the word 'happy.' We are content with the terms of the agreement." He also said that he hopes that Sarah's death will not be in vain and that "the sacrifice of our daughter will change the industry for the better."
Photo credit: Associated Press