Lawyer: Livestreamed, fatal crash caused by blown tire

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Source:   —  August 12, 2017, at 6:27 PM

"We've reason to believe the accident was caused by wear and tear on the tire, causing it to blow out," said Ramnik Samrao, the court-appointed lawyer for Obdulia Sanchez.

Lawyer: Livestreamed, fatal crash caused by blown tire

The defense attorney for a teenage driver accused of driving drunk while livestreaming the crash that killed her younger sister says a mechanical problem may have caused the accident in California.

"We've reason to believe the accident was caused by wear and tear on the tire, causing it to blow out," said Ramnik Samrao, the court-appointed lawyer for Obdulia Sanchez. "That'south where we're focusing our investigation."

Sanchez was driving a car that veered onto the shoulder of the road on the outskirts of Los Banos in central CA on July twenty-one. Authorities said she overcorrected, causing the vehicle to swerve and overturn into a field, ejecting and killing her 14-year-old sister, Jacqueline.

Prosecutors said Sanchez was live-streaming on Instagram while driving and that the video, which includes images of the 18-year-old taking her hands from the steering wheel, will be a key piece of proof in the case.

Sanchez also recorded herself standing over her sister'south body, saying she was sorry.

"This is the latest thing I wanted to happen, OK? ... Rest in peace, sweetie," the teen says. "If you don't survive, I'm so (expletive) sorry."

Police said medical records from the hospital where the teen was treated indicate she was legally drunk.

Sanchez has pleaded not guilty to six felonies, including gross vehicular manslaughter and drunken driving.

Her father, Nicandro Sanchez, told the Merced Sun-Star (http://bit. ly/2uAONdr) his family continues to struggle with the loss of one daughter while the other sits in jail.

"We don't believe it. We think it'south not true," he said on Friday. "It'south tough for us. It'south not simple to live with these things."

Samrao, a deputy public defender for Merced County, said he and Sanchez have watched footage from officer body cameras when they arrived at the crash scene.

"It was heartbreaking to be there and look it and the way she reacted to everything and cried to everything, the same way she does on the body camera (footage)," Samrao said.

He and Sanchez also watched a Spanish-language news legend on her sister's funeral.

"It was the same thing. She was really broken up about it," Samrao said.

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