A Los Angeles Police Department sergeant’s daughter was handed a two-year state prison term Thursday for a crash that killed a bicyclist in Gardena last year.
Vanessa Marie Yanez, 24, pleaded no contest Aug. 6 to one felony count each of leaving the scene of an accident and perjury, along with one misdemeanor count of vehicular manslaughter.
Yanez was driving eastbound on El Segundo Boulevard when her car struck 60-year-old bicyclist Jesse Dotson Jr., who died three days after the June 26, 2013, crash.
Yanez — the daughter of veteran LAPD Sgt. Arturo Yanez — went to the Huntington Park Police Department about 1:50 a.m. the day after the crash and filed a stolen car report.
“She reported it stolen and said it was found parked down the street and had suffered some kind of traffic collision damage,” Gardena police Lt. Steve Prendergast said shortly after Yanez’s arrest.
The next day, when media reports about the accident started to appear, the Huntington Park police officer who took the report realized the connection and called Gardena police to tip them off, Prendergast said.
During the sentencing hearing, some Dotson’s relatives lashed out at Yanez.
“You left my brother for dead,” Dotson’s sister, Annette Dotson Woodard, said. “All along, you knew you hit a human being.”
Outside court, Dotson’s daughter Alyssa told NBC4 the two-year sentence wasn’t enough.
“It’s just unjust to me,” she told the station. “I don’t feel like justice has really been served for my father, knowing all (that) he has brought to this world.”
— City News Service