PORTLAND -- A driver was sentenced Thursday for the crash that killed his friend in Southeast Portland early this year.

John Martin, 49, was driving drunk with his longtime friend, Lion Langan, 37, in the passenger seat when their car struck a utility pole. Langan was killed in the crash. Martin was taken to a nearby hospital for treatment then later charged with second-degree manslaughter, reckless driving and DUII.

During his sentencing Thursday, Martin cried when he spoke, saying he wished he could change what happened.

If I could trade places with Lion and bring him back, I would, he said, addressing Langan s family in court.

Martin was sentenced to 48 months in prison for criminally negligent homicide and DUI in a plea agreement.

Langan s mother Kerry Smith also spoke during Thursday s court proceedings. She said this has been extremely hard on their family but they forgive Martin.

You have forever altered my life. My life will never be the same. I will never recover from this, she said.

Martin told the judge he would like to be able to counsel other people about the dangers and consequences of drinking and driving, so others can learn from his tragic mistakes.

The deadly crash happened near the intersection of Southeast Division Street and 42nd Avenue in late January.

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