A 22-year-old man convicted in a racing contest in Westminster that killed his sister was sentenced Friday to a year in jail.
Jorel Dayoan could have faced up to six years in prison for the April 5, 2012, crash at Hoover and Main Streets that killed 18-year-old Jessica Dayoan and injured Boris Sikar, another motorist involved in the deadly crash.
Sentencing of co-defendant Joshua Lautherboren, 26, was postponed until March 20 so his defense attorney can review newly presented documents from the military that indicate a history of dishonesty during his stint in the service.
Orange County Superior Court Judge Cheri Pham rejected tearful pleas from Dayoan’s sister and mother to place the defendant on probation so he could have a chance to “redeem” himself.
Pham noted that Jessica Dayoan was not the only victim in the crash. She said it was “nothing short of a miracle” that Sikar, who was driving home from work at the time of the 5 p.m. head-on crash, was not killed.
The defendants, who did not know each other, pulled up to the same intersection and then raced southbound down Hoover, getting up to 75 mph in a 40 mph-zone within a half mile, Senior Deputy District Attorney Jennifer Walker said.
Dayoan lost control of his Toyota MR2 at Hazard Avenue and slammed into a northbound Honda Accord driven by Sikar, who broke his collarbone. Lautherborne, who was behind the wheel of a pickup truck, kept driving and was later arrested, thanks to a witness who followed the truck and snapped a photo of the vehicle.
The defendant’s mother, Ninia, pleaded for mercy for her son.
“Today, I stand in front of you as a mother of two children I equally love,” she said. “I stand here as a mother who has already lost one child… If you take away (her son) I don’t know what I will do.”
Ninia Dayoan said her son “made a mistake” and was “careless,” but added, “Please don’t put him in jail.”
Dayoan’s sister, Jewel, made the same case, saying, “Jail would cause him to crumble down, knowing he would be on his own for a time.”
Pham rejected a request from Dayoan’s attorney, Celeste Mulrooney, to let the defendant pay to do his time in Seal Beach’s jail, which would allow him to work during the day and do his time during the evenings.
The judge said Jessica Dayoan was vulnerable because “she had no control over how fast (her brother) drove.” She added it was not just an “accident,” because the defendant “engaged in a speed contest. There was absolutely no reason for the defendant to race the other co-defendant other than a love for speed.”
The judge noted, however, that Dayoan is a student at Golden West College in Huntington Beach and has a job at Walmart and that he enjoys “extremely strong” family support. Dayoan has also shown remorse for his actions, Pham said.
Sending Dayoan to prison would expose him to “hardened criminals,” making rehabilitation tougher on him, Pham said.
Dayoan will be placed on five years of formal probation when he is done serving his jail sentence, Pham said. If he violates the terms of his probation he could be sent to prison for six years, she said.
The judge also warned Dayoan that if he is involved in another deadly crash he could face a murder charge.
— City News Service