Top 2009 News: Calif. Woman Sentenced to 6 Years for Fatal Texting Crash
Original post date: April 06, 2009
REDDING, CA - A woman who crashed into a line of stopped vehicles while text-messaging on her cell phone has been sentenced to six years in a California prison for killing the female passenger of one of the vehicles, according to the New York Times.
Deborah Matis-Engle was sentenced April 3 by a judge in Redding, Calif.
Investigators said Deborah Matis-Engle was speeding and text messaging when she slammed into the vehicles stopped at a construction zone in August 2007.
Shasta County prosecutor Stephanie Bridgett said the 49-year-old woman had paid several bills by cell phone in the moments before the crash.
She was in the middle of one of those transactions when she struck a vehicle that burst into flames, killing 46-year-old Petra Winn.
Defense attorney Jeffrey Stotter said he will appeal.