A 23-year-old woman accused of crashing into and severely injuring a cyclist, then leaving the scene, was sentenced to five years' probation Monday.

Abigail A. Allin struck Samuel Abate on May 20, 2011, when he was riding his bicycle on North Swan Road between East Camp Lowell Drive and the Rillito River and fled the scene.

Allin had her damaged windshield replaced and the repairman, who heard about the hit and run through media reports, contacted police, who arrested the woman a few days after the crash.

Abate was hospitalized and suffered a traumatic brain injury, multiple fractures and lacerations.

In February, Allin pleaded guilty to one count each of leaving the scene of an accident resulting in serious injury, tampering with physical evidence and criminal damage.

At the sentencing hearing, Abate said Allin's actions affected many people but he forgave her.

Abate's father, William Abate, also spoke at the hearing and showed the court photos of his injured son in the hospital and asked Superior Court Judge Paul Tang for a prison sentence for Allin "so that she may reflect upon how to behave in a civil society."

William Abate said that although his son's recovery has gone well, they don't know what future issues could arise from his injuries.

Allin cried when she addressed the court and apologized to Samuel Abate.

"I don't understand how I could have acted so selfishly or done all the things that I've done," Allin said.

Allin's defense attorney, Erin Carrillo, asked Tang for a probation sentence because the woman served 15 months in jail, successfully completed two substance-abuse programs, is in a transitional program, has a full-time job, volunteers and has the support of family and friends.

Contact reporter Veronica Cruz at vcruz@azstarnet.com or at 573-4224.