Mom takes plea deal in crash that killed girls
She was driving on a suspended license when her daughters died in river plunge.
PETALUMA, CALIF. — The mother of two girls killed in 2016 when the car she was driving plunged into a Northern California river has reached a plea agreement with prosecutors.
Alejandra Hernandez, 27, recently pleaded no contest to two counts of felony gross vehicular manslaughter, according to the Press Democrat.
“She’s accepting responsibility that this wouldn’t have happened if she’d been more careful, if she’d done something differently,” said her attorney, Izaak Schwaiger. “Nothing will make her feel worse than when she crawled out of the car without her children.”
A Sonoma County judge will issue a sentence next month when he reviews the terms of the agreement.
If the judge accepts the agreement, Hernandez will be given credit for the year she has spent confined to her home with an ankle bracelet, and given a fiveyear probation term.
She will be prohibited from driving during that term, Deputy Dist. Atty. Laura Passaglia said.
The August 2016 crash occurred when Hernandez was taking her daughters, 7year-old Sayra Gonzalez and 9-year-old Delilah Gonzalez, to school.
Police and firefighters dove into the water within minutes of the crash and cut the girls free of their seat belts. They were rushed to a hospital but died.
At the time of the crash, Hernandez-Ruiz had a small amount of methamphetamine in her system, and her driver’s license was suspended, officials said.
By the time Hernandez was charged in September 2017, she was undergoing chemotherapy and radiation treatment for an aggressive form of cervical cancer. Schwaiger said the treatment appears to have worked, and he’s been told she’s doing well in recovery.
CHP officers examine the car of Alejandra Hernandez in 2016. Daughters Sayra Gonzalez and Delilah Gonzalez died after the Petaluma River crash.