[KHTS] – Two men were ordered to pay a total of $23,531.71 in restitution for a high-speed crash in 2012 that killed 19-year-old Dakota Demott of Canyon Country.
Both defendants, Colt Doherty and Thomas Vensko, were sentenced in August. On Friday, they were ordered to pay restitution to Demott’s family.
The total restitution amount, $23,531.71, was split between the two defendants, according to District Attorney’s Office spokesman Ricardo Santiago.
The fee included $2,025 for lost wages and $810 for travel expenses to Mark Demott, $8,224.54 for Sherri Demott and $12, 478.71 for funeral expenses.
Both Doherty and Vensko pleaded guilty to one count of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence, according to District Attorney’s Office Spokesman Greg Risling.
From a previous story:
Doherty, who was driving the car Demott was in, received six years in state prison, and Thomas Vensko, the man he was accused of racing, received a suspended sentence of four years, and five years of formal probation. He was ordered to serve 180 days in a Los Angeles County jail.
On the night of Jan. 10, 2012, Demott and Doherty were traveling in a Ford Mustang at a high rate of speed on Sand Canyon Road, according to officials.
When Doherty entered a curve, he lost control of the car and collided with a large oak tree, the impact of which ejected Demott from the vehicle and threw him into a fence, according to officials. Demott was declared dead at the scene.
Doherty allegedly was under the influence at the time of the crash.
Doherty has been in jail since Aug. 8, 2012, in lieu of more than $1 million bail, according to Sheriff’s Department arrest records. Vensko had his bail reduced to $100,000 at a hearing in November 2012. He posted it and he was not in custody while awaiting Thursday’s hearing.
Witnesses had told deputies that there were other vehicles involved in the crash. Vensko was arrested because he was racing Doherty before the crash occurred, according to traffic investigator Deputy Mike Shapiro, at the time of the crash.
“Even though he didn’t cause the death directly, because he was street racing, he faces the same penalty as the driver,” Shapiro explained.
Vensko had two passengers in the car with him, but they are not being charged.
The family filed a lawsuit against the city of Santa Clarita as a result of the crash.
“The parties (in the lawsuit) have submitted a stipulation requesting that the matter be stayed until after the criminal proceedings,” said Joe Montes, city attorney for Santa Clarita, when questioned about the lawsuit in October. “Right now, it’s difficult for the parties to complete discovery when there are criminal proceedings ongoing.”
Montes referred an inquiry as to the damages sought by the plaintiffs to the plaintiff’s attorneys, the law firm Owen, Patterson & Owen, which is representing the Demott family in the wrongful death lawsuit.
Attorneys for the firm did not immediately respond to a request for that information.