MERCED, California - A California teen who was driving drunk while livestreaming a crash that killed her little sister was sentenced to six years in prison Thursday.
Obdulia Sanchez, 19, was emotional in court while reading a letter of remorse to the judge.
"If she was here in this courtroom, I would like to say I'm sorry, and that if I could take your place, I really would," Sanchez said. "I wanted better for her. I wanted her to be smarter than I was, and now she's dead. It should've been me. Never Jackie, and never Manuela."
Sanchez was charged with gross vehicular manslaughter, DUI and child endangerment for the July 2017 crash. The car driven by Sanchez veered onto the shoulder of a road in Los Banos, about 100 miles south of San Francisco. Authorities say she overcorrected, causing the vehicle to swerve and overturn, ejecting and killing her 14-year-old sister.
Prosecutors gave new details about Sanchez' blood sample, saying that she was not only under the influence of alcohol, but that her blood also showed traces of marijuana and cocaine.
She streamed the gruesome video on Instagram, which showed her screaming over the body of her sister, 14-year-old Jacqueline Sanchez.
"I'm going to jail for life," Sanchez said on the live stream. "I understand that. I don't care."
Prosecutors argued that the language in the video show Sanchez' disregard for her sister's death.
"She killed her sister, but she didn't care, that's one reasonable interpretation," prosecutor Thomas Min said. "If there was any case that deserves a max, this is it."
18-year-old woman arrested after live streaming deadly crash near Los Banos
Sanchez' attorney, Ramnik Samrao, said the troubled teen was sexually abused at 11. She was later abducted, and then trafficked a year before she was placed in a group home. He said her language in the video was a cry for help.
"What she's saying is that she doesn't care what the consequences are," Samrao said. "She just wants someone to show up and help her sister."
Sanchez parents thanked the court, and her father said his daughter is taking responsibility.
"Lula did something wrong, and she knows and she accepts everything," Nicandro Sanchez said.
Samrao and Obdulia's parents requested probation so she could come home and get the care she needs, but it was denied.
Sanchez ended her own letter by saying that she does not want to go to prison, but that she deserves the punishment.
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