[KHTS] – A Stevenson Ranch woman received the maximum allowable sentence to a charge related to a fatal DUI crash she caused in August 2013.
Suzette L. Crockett, 46, of Stevenson Ranch, was sentenced to four years for gross vehicular manslaughter in the death of Johnny Sanchez, 58, of Lake View Terrace.
She pleaded no contest to the charge in June, which is the same as a guilty plea in the eyes of the court, with the understanding there was a maximum of a 48-month sentence, according to Deputy District Attorney Emily Cole.
“It was similar to an open plea, but there was an understanding that the most she could get was four years,” Cole said.
Crockett was accused of driving her 2007 Matrix north on The Old Road, near Sagecrest Circle, approaching a green light in the left-turn area, according to a California Highway Patrol report.
Sanchez was driving southbound in a 2005 Suzuki motorcycle on The Old Road, where Crockett failed to yield to Sanchez, according to the collision report.
Crockett had a blood-alcohol level of 0.18 at the time of the crash, according to court records.
The family of friends of the victim spoke at a Sept. 18 hearing, as Crockett’s lawyers cited the mitigating circumstance of the intersection — Sagebrush Circle and The Old Road — was dangerous, which is why a turn signal has since been added to the traffic light.
Cole argued Crockett was speeding, Sanchez’ lights were on and the suspect had a BAC of more than twice the legal limit.
Crockett had left her home that night last August to buy beer after she was already intoxicated, according to court records.
Evidence presented at the preliminary hearing showed Crockett had just purchased more beer, which was next to her in the car she was driving at the time of the crash.
The judge heard all of the evidence and sentenced her to four years,” Cole said.