Stephen Dolan, the drunk driver who hit and killed Irish American teen Christopher Jack ‘CJ’ Hackett in Yonkers in August 2022, has been handed one and a half years to four and a half years in prison.

Dolan was sentenced on Thursday, December 14 at Westchester County Courthouse in White Plains, New York.

In September, the 46-year-old pled guilty to second-degree vehicular manslaughter, leaving the scene of a fatal accident, and driving while intoxicated.

Hackett's aunt Michelle Kern delivered an impact statement during Thursday's sentencing: "Stephen Dolan only thought about himself and the fun that he wanted to have.

"After having at least 17 drinks and shots, he danced his way to the van with a beer in his hand, a minute later hitting CJ head-on.

"Stephen Dolan told the police that he thought he had hit a road cone.

"CJ was six feet tall. When CJ's face and head slammed into your windshield, I'm pretty sure you knew what you had just done."

Kern said Dolan, who fled the scene, was a "coward." She recounted how Hackett's family gathered at his bedside and his friends livestreamed a prayer vigil in the hospital as doctors tried to stay his life.

Kern added: "Stephen Dolan, you were given a plea deal of one and a half to four and a half years, we were given a life sentence without CJ.

"Our holidays, birthdays, family gatherings will never be the same.

"There will always be a missing piece in our family."

Dolan said during the sentencing that he is "ashamed" and admitted, "There is nothing I can say that would make up for the pain I caused."

He continued: "I deserve to live with this, I deserve to live with the fact that I broke the hearts of so many people.

"To the Hackett family, I will forever live with the fact that you have to pay for the price for the choices that I've made. I am so ashamed.

"I want you to know that I do care about what I did and want to atone for what I did to CJ, AJ, their families, and my own family.

"I deserve prison time for my actions and I will spend my days and nights thinking about the suffering that I caused."

In a statement, the Westchester County District Attorney’s Office said on Thursday it “has remained committed to seeking justice for CJ Hackett and his family. 

“We consistently recommended to the Court that the defendant receive the maximum sentence under the law of two and one-third to seven years in state prison for the vehicular manslaughter of the 16-year-old Stepinac High School student. 

“While we are disappointed that the Court’s promised sentence today will not reflect our recommendation, the defendant, Stephen Dolan, is going to prison.

“Our thoughts remain with the Hackett family and the Yonkers and Stepinac communities.”

On August 5, 2022, Yonkers Police confirmed that they had responded to the 600 block of McLean Avenue on a report of a scooter operator having been struck by a vehicle just after midnight on August 3.

Hackett, 16, was discovered with severe head injuries and transported to a local hospital. The vehicle that had struck him fled the scene. Hackett died from his injuries on August 4.

An investigation was launched where authorities interviewed subjects and witnesses, recovered surveillance video, processed forensic evidence, and reconstructed the accident dynamics.

The investigation showed that Hackett, 16, was operating an electric scooter west on McLean Avenue in the eastbound lane when he was struck head-on by a cargo van traveling east in the eastbound lane. The van fled the scene; a witness called 911.

Over the next 36 hours, detectives worked to successfully locate the van and identify Dolan, who was placed into custody without incident. The vehicle, a 2004 Chevrolet Express, was impounded as evidence.

Investigators said at the time that they believed Dolan was consuming alcohol before the accident and was under the influence of intoxicants.

On August 8, 2022, Westchester County District Attorney Miriam E. Rocah announced that Dolan was charged with Leaving the Scene of an Incident with a Fatality Without Reporting, a felony. He was arraigned on August 5, 2022, in Yonkers City Court and bail was set.

According to ABC News, prosecutors alleged during the arraignment that surveillance video showed Dolan drinking at two bars, consuming at least 17 drinks before the crash.

Dolan, who was an employee with the Yonkers Public Works department, was arrested at work the day after the crash. A city spokesperson told LoHud on Thursday that he was fired two weeks after the accident.

Hackett, whose mother is from Co Leitrim and whose paternal grandparents were from Co Carlow, was about to begin his third year of high school when the tragedy occurred.

The teen was well-known in the tight-knit, Irish American communities of Woodlawn / Yonkers, as well as East Durham in upstate New York. A memorial to Hackett was erected at the scene of the accident and remains there to this day.

In May 2023, legislation nicknamed 'CJ's Law' was introduced in the New York State Assembly "in relation to increasing the penalties for leaving the scene of an accident without reporting where such accident resulted in the death of a minor to a class C felony punishable by a fine of not less than $4,000 nor more than $8,000 in addition to any other penalties provided by law."