BRIDGEPORT — There were tears of joy and despair Friday as two young men were sentenced — one to prison, the other to probation — for an incident of street racing in Stratford that killed another man.

“To know that these young men are just going to walk away free is unbearable to my family, take a look at the pictures of my nephew and rethink justice,” Jennifer Edwards begged Superior Court Judge Robert Devlin.

Devlin ended up sentencing 29-year-old Ronald Patterson, who was driving the car in which 21-year-old Dawaan Edwards died, to five years, suspended after he serves 18 months, and three years’ probation.

“One, you were drinking, and two, you were racing and couldn’t negotiate a curve, hit a tree and Dawaan died,” the judge told Patterson. “That’s a crime, but then you made up a lie to police about there being a white van.”

But with Aaron Perkins, 24, who was driving the other car, the judge imposed a suspended 5-year sentence with three years of probation. He also ordered Perkins to pay a $200 fine.

“If you weren’t racing the young man would be alive today,” the judge added.

Perkins and Patterson had previously pleaded guilty to racing, misconduct with a motor vehicle and reckless driving. In addition, Patterson also pleaded guilty to driving under the influence.

Senior Assistant State’s Emily Trudeau told the judge that on April 6, 2018, Perkins and Patterson were racing each other on Lordship Boulevard when Perkins drove off the road and struck a tree. His passenger, Edwards, was killed in the crash.

Both Perkins and Patterson told police that Perkins had been forced off the road by a white car which had then fled the scene, Trudeau said. But the prosecutor continued that further investigation determined that to be a lie.