MIAMI (CBSMiami) – In a Miami-Dade courtroom Friday there was a torrent of tears and a sea of blue – blue shirts, blue fingernail polish, blue bracelets.
Blue was the favorite color of 13-year-old Kaely Camacho, killed by a drunk driver in April, 2012. The family van the girl was riding in was cut in half.
Sandor Guillen was racing at more than 80 mph police say, literally stinking drunk, when his SUV blew a red light and slammed into the Camacho family van.
Kaely, a bright popular Southwood Middle School student, sitting in the backseat was killed outright. Her skull was cracked by the force of the collision.
“I spent every day of my life with her. We were a pair,” said Kaely’s sister Bree Ann in court Friday as Guillen came to be sentenced. “Losing her was the worst thing I’ve ever been through.”
“He has shown no remorse,” Bree Ann said, referring to Guillen.
Kaely’s mother said her grief is incalculable.
“I don’t know if I grieve the most for Kaely, for myself, or for her dad,” said Angela Camacho, her voice choking.
Gabby Perez, Kaely’s best friend, was overcome with emotion, and unable to read a statement she had prepared. She gave the judge a petition with some 3000 signatures from students calling for Guillen to receive the maximum possible penalty.
Guillen’s family and friends characterized him as a caring person and healthcare worker.
“Sandor is not a threat to society,” said long time friend Emily Perez. “This was an accident.”
His sister, Sophia Jennings, said, “Sandor is my unsung hero.”
Guillen’s father, Sandor Guillen, Sr., was bitter, saying his son was the victim of politics and a biased media.
“The media did not kill Kaely Camacho,” retorted an angry prosecutor, Laura Adams.
Guillen had nothing to say. No apology. No remorse.
“Your choice is to remain silent,” asked Judge Ellen Venzer.
“Yes ma’am,” Guillen replied.
“Okay, fair enough,” the judge said.
Prosecutor Adams likened a drunken Guillen behind the wheel of his SUV to someone wielding a weapon.
“He may as well have been shooting an AK-47 into a crowd,” the prosecutor said.
Defense Atty. Jordan Lewin asked the judge to impose the minimum sentencing allowed on Guillen, citing his lack of prior criminal history and potential for rehabilitation.
The judge though noted that Guillen had a blood alcohol level of nearly three times the legal limit, tried to stagger away from the scene after killing Kaylee, lied to police when they found him nearby, and had been driving illegally on the busway where private vehicles are not permitted.
Venzer sentenced him to 20 years in state prison, followed by nine years of probation, fines and restitution.
He must also make an annual $100 contribution to a charity in Kaely’s memory.
The Camacho family was satisfied.
“We have never wanted revenge,” said Kirk Camacho,” Kaely’s father. He said he hoped the sentence handed down Friday would serve as a “lesson to people to not drink and drive.”
“You haven’t heard the last from us,” said sister Bree Ann, who has become very active with the group Mothers Against Drunk Driving in the wake of Kaely’s death. She vowed that the family would continue to raise awareness of the tragedies that can be caused by those who drink and drive.
[display-posts category=”news” wrapper=”ul” posts_per_page=”5″]