‘Midnight Rider’ assistant director pleads guilty in crew member death

The day after "Midnight Rider" director Randall Miller reached a guilty plea that absolved his wife and business partner in the 2014 film set death of crew member Sarah Jones, Wayne County District Attorney Jackie Johnson announced another guilty plea in the case.

“First Assistant Director Hillary Schwartz was found guilty after a bench trial before Superior Court Judge Anthony Harrison,” Johnson said in a statement issued Tuesday afternoon. “Schwartz was sentenced to 10 years probation, and ordered to pay a $5,000 fine. As a condition of probation, Schwartz cannot serve in any capacity in which she would be responsible for the safety of crew members on a film set.”

Schwartz had cooperated with authorities and was planning to testify at the trial that was scheduled to start Monday. Her sentence concludes all of the criminal cases stemming from the February 2014 fatality.

In pleading guilty Monday to involuntary manslaughter and criminal trespassing, Miller received a sentence of two yeas in jail and eight on probation, in addition to a $20,000 fine and 360 hours of community service, while charges were dropped against his wife and business partner Jody Savin.

Executive producer Jay Sedrish also pleaded guilty and got 10 years probation with the condition that he cannot be responsible for the safety of film crew members.

Miller was taken into custody by the Wayne County Sheriff’s Office to begin serving his sentence after Monday’s deal was announced.

Jones, 27, was killed and several crew members injured on a Jesup train trestle when a train came barreling down the tracks where “Midnight Rider” was setting up to film a scene – without permission.