MONTEREY COUNTY — Almost exactly two years after a UC Santa Cruz student caused a collision that killed two people, she was sentenced Friday to six years in state prison in Monterey County Superior Court.
Lynnea Leticia Hernandez, 21, a resident of Cedar Park, Texas, was immediately remanded into custody, Monterey County Deputy District Attorney Merideth Sillman said.
The term was the maximum allowed under state law.
Hernandez pleaded guilty in January to one count of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence for the death of Nikolas Malliarodakis and one count of vehicular manslaughter with gross negligence for the death of Lillian Scott.
She also pleaded guilty to two counts of reckless driving causing injury to her passengers Sydney Beyer, Guadalupe Valdez and Morgan Benninger.
The collision occurred on March 21, 2016, when Hernandez and her friends were on a spring break trip to Big Sur.
Hernandez was driving on Highway 1, and was shown on a cell phone video passing a marijuana pipe with her passengers, singing and dancing.
Hernandez at one point is seen looking and singing into the video, taking her eyes off the road, and not paying attention to driving.
At one point, Hernandez crossed into oncoming traffic and hit a vehicle driven by Malliarodakis, 24, killing him instantly. Scott, 20, who was seated in the middle back seat, was also killed instantly.
The other passengers in Hernandez’s vehicle suffered major injuries.
“It’s a tragic case for everyone involved,” Sillman said. “It took two lives and impacted two families that will never be the same. There are no winners in this case, but hopefully both families can start getting some closure.”