Sasho Ristovski is reminded of what he did every time he looks in the mirror.

The 28-year-old's face is tattooed heavily as a sign of remorse. He thinks of himself as "some sort of demon", according to his lawyer. On social media, he refers to himself as "Lucifer".

The Victorian man got drunk, got behind the wheel, threatened his girlfriend then followed through with the threat. He told 16-year-old Maddison Tilyard "I'll put you in the grave by the end of the night" before crashing his car into a tree.

That was the early hours of July 4, 2014. On Tuesday, more than two years after the crash that killed the teen on impact, Ristovski learned his fate.


In the Victorian County Court, he was handed a seven-year sentence with a minimum term of four years and nine months.

It will never be enough for the family of Ms Tilyard who say their daughter is always in their thoughts.

Ristovski was driving at 88km/h when he veered off course, over a roundabout and into a tree.

Minutes earlier, witnesses said he was speeding at more than 200km/h.

The crash took place in Laverton North, not far from where Ristovski had collected the teen from a party. Crown prosecutor Mia Stylianou said Ristovski told Ms Tilyard: "I'll put you in a grave by the end of the night", before adding to her friends: "I'll have you all in a grave".

Sasho Ristovski has been sentenced over the drink-driving death of girlfriend Maddison Tilyard. Photo / Twitter
Sasho Ristovski has been sentenced over the drink-driving death of girlfriend Maddison Tilyard. Photo / Twitter

Ristovski was found to have an alcohol reading of 0.064 at the time of the crash. Judge Frank Gucciardo said his comments showed he was aware of his risky behaviour.

After the fact, he was certainly aware of what he had done.

"I didn't have any physical scars," he told the court last month.

"I wanted a reminder so I didn't forget what I've done," he said of his face tattoos, which include a scar from ear-to-ear similar to that made famous by Heath Ledger's Joker character in The Dark Knight.

The former security guard expressed regret during his trial. His lawyer, Stephen Payne, said he accepted he would do jail time for his "appalling and utterly inexcusable" actions.

"He can't turn back the clock," Mr Payne said. "All he can do is express the deepest heartfelt sorry he can."

Of Ristovski's tattoos he said: "They are clearly of something almost demonic. That's how he saw himself, as some sort of demon."

Ms Tilyard's father, Jon Tilyard, gave an emotional tribute to his daughter, saying she is constantly in his mind and heart.

"I don't want to feel the memories fade. It's all I have now," he told the court.
"I can feel her as a little girl with her arms holding tight around my neck.

"I will never feel her hugs again."

Her mother, Angela Pope, said she cannot accept what happened.

"Some days the pain of my loss is unbearable," she said.

Judge Gucciardo told the Ms Tilyard's family on Tuesday that he believed the non-parole period of less than five years was "appropriate".

"It can vindicate the rights of victims and endeavour to rehabilitate the offenders," he said.