Woman who livestreamed deadly Merced County DUI crash on parole after serving 26 months

A Stockton woman who livestreamed a DUI crash that killed her sister in Merced County two years ago is now on parole.

Obdulia Sanchez was sentenced to six years and four months in prison last year after a single-vehicle traffic collision killed her sister.

A spokesperson from the California Department of Corrections and Rehabilitation on Saturday confirmed Sanchez was released on parole Sept. 21.

Sanchez, who was 18 at the time of the July 21, 2017, crash, was livestreaming herself while driving when she lost control of the vehicle and crashed into a field near the intersection of Henry Miller Road and Highway 140, north of Los Banos.

The crash killed her 14-year-old sister, Jacqueline Sanchez, and injured Jacqueline’s 14-year-old girlfriend, Manuela Ceja.

Sanchez’s blood alcohol content registered at 0.106 about 90 minutes after the crash, according to court records. But it was Sanchez’s actions right after the collision that grabbed national attention.

Sanchez livestreamed her sister’s dead body, telling her to wake up, while saying she killed her sister and was “going to jail.”

AK Sanchez Sentencing 4
Obdulia Sanchez, 18, of Stockton, turns to look at her family members as they address Judge Ronald W. Hansen during a sentencing hearing in the Merced County Superior Courthouse in Merced, Calif., on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018. Sanchez was sentenced to six years and four months in prison for gross vehicular manslaughter, DUI and child endangerment for a crash which killed her 14-year-old sister Jacqueline Sanchez and injured 15-year-old Manuela Ceja in July of 2017. Andrew Kuhn

“Sanchez received milestone credits for successful completion of approved rehabilitative or educational programs,” he said, noting she was also approved for the state’s Custody to Community Transitional Reentry Program. She had been in that program since Nov. 8, 2018.

The program allows serious and violent crime offenders to serve their sentence in the community while providing services aimed at re-entering the community, treatment for substance use disorders, relationships, employment and education, Dodson said.

While the reentry program is not a secure facility, Dodson said, participants are monitored and rewarded for good behavior by re-entering the community for work or school.

Vikaas Shanker is an award-winning reporter covering education, crime and courts for the Merced Sun-Star and Los Banos Enterprise. After growing up in Naperville, Illinois and graduating from the University of Kansas, he reported in several Chicago suburbs before moving to Merced County in 2016.