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Sherri Lynn Wilkins drove 2 miles through a Los Angeles... Sherri Lynn Wilkins drove 2 miles through a Los Angeles suburb with a dying man on her windshield. She faces a maximum sentence of 45 years to life. (AP Photo/Daily Breeze, Brad Graverson, Pool, File)


A substance-abuse counselor who drove 2 miles through a Los Angeles suburb with a dying man on her windshield was convicted Tuesday of second-degree murder, drunken driving and hit-and-run.
Sherri Lynn Wilkins showed no response as the Superior Court jury returned with its verdict.

Wilkins' blood-alcohol level was nearly twice the legal limit for driving when she struck 31-year-old Phillip Moreno in November 2012 in suburban Torrance, prosecutors said.

"The way she treated Phillip Moreno struck at human dignity," Deputy District Attorney John Harlan, the lead prosecutor, said after the verdict. "This case has been about human dignity. We do not tolerate someone who does not pull over when they see someone on their windshield."

A large contingent of Moreno's relatives, including brothers and sisters, were present for the verdict.

Outside court, they embraced Harlan and co-prosecutor Saman Ahmadpour but declined to speak to reporters.

Wilkins, 52, who was an addict before she became a drug and alcohol counselor, said she had been drinking that night but wasn't drunk. She said she had been "self-medicating" while waiting for knee-replacement surgery and had consumed three single-serving bottles of vodka and a can of Budweiser beer and Clamato before starting to drive.

Her lawyer, Nan Whitfield, was unreachable for comment. She had argued that Moreno was drunk and jumped on Wilkins' car and that she panicked.

Wilkins testified that she never saw him coming and it was as if he fell out of the sky.

Harlan said during the trial that the force of the crash punched a hole in the passenger side of Wilkins' window, and Moreno lost his shoes and pants, but still she didn't stop to render aid or call 911.

It wasn't until passing motorists noticed the bizarre scene that they were able to swarm Wilkins' car at a traffic light and keep her there until police arrived.

Wilkins faces a maximum sentence of 45 years to life. Jurors found to be true the allegation that she has a record of two previous serious felonies, making her subject to the California three-strikes law.

Superior Court Judge Henry Hall set Wilkins' sentencing for March 26.

She testified during the trial, telling jurors the story of her addiction, which began when she was in a car accident at the age of 15 and suffered a broken back and shattered bones in her ankles and legs. Wilkins said she started using heroin when it became "cheaper than going to the doctor."

Wilkins, who acknowledged having served time for residential burglaries over the years, said she kicked the heroin habit with the help of methadone and more recently had been using medical marijuana. She told of obtaining a degree in addiction counseling and going to work at a treatment center.

Wilkins was leaving the center on the night of the crash.


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    • 1 Second Ago
  • 45 Comments
      Phyllis
      • 1 Year Ago
      I have in many years past been drunk, and although you say and do things you would never do whilst sober, I cannot imagine this woman doing this even if she was drunk. What a cold, callous beech she is, I hope she gets life with no parole. This is a drug counselor on top of everything else, what can I say.
      Paul
      • 1 Year Ago
      flys on the windshield, scrape em off first, then drive
      LewTag
      • 1 Year Ago
      I suppose you could say it takes one to know one...but now she will get free room and board in perpetual rehab at taxpayer expense...the only problem is some family must grieve their lost loved for her addiction...and it must all be god's will or it would be different...ergo Theofatalism...google for details...www.theofatalism.org
        • 1 Year Ago
        @LewTag
        LewTag, you are either being sarcastic of else sincere when you go "It is must all be God's will or it would be different. Well, as I see it, OF COURSE it is not "God's will " that an apparently innocent man is struck and left to die on a window shield, BUT, God has given ALL of us "FREEDOM OR CHOICE". No one is perfect,, but the Bible indicates EVERY SINGLE ONE WILL have to stand accountable for his choices in this road of life. Choose everlasting life--or "everlasting " punishment. (If you got this far, thank you for listening with an open mind.) CliffordII
          • 1 Year Ago
          Forgive me yall, that should have read "Freedom OF Choice". CliffordII
      namaste319
      • 1 Year Ago
      unbelievable....
      • 1 Year Ago
      human dignity, interesting. 50 yrs amazing.
      cactusj8
      • 1 Year Ago
      I thought drunk drivers now got probation in exchange for cash.
      enohamc
      • 1 Year Ago
      The facts of this case SCREAM a sentence of maximum of 45 YEARS no less, more if you consider this woman has already served her parole by being allowed to be on the streets, when she should have had her sorry, stupid butt in prison.
      myoung9956
      • 1 Year Ago
      I'll bet she's a tee party repugnican and professes to be a good kristian.
        gdwilli3
        • 1 Year Ago
        @myoung9956
        demoncrat
        JohnnYuma
        • 1 Year Ago
        @myoung9956
        What is a " kristian?" I know what a " Christian" is but cannot understand your terminology...
        Dan
        • 1 Year Ago
        @myoung9956
        I'll bet you're an idiot.
        maltesecrosse304
        • 1 Year Ago
        @myoung9956
        YOUR WRONG IT SEEMS, THAT MOST OF THE DRUGGIES ARE IN HOLLYWOOD. ONE OF YOUR PROGRESSIVE LIBERALS JUST MURDERED HIMSELF WITH AN OVERDOSE .. YOU LIBERALS ARE SO FULL OF SHI-ITE AND DRUGS..
        • 1 Year Ago
        @myoung9956
        Somebody really knows how to spell. That statement just made you look completely ignorant.
      dedndogyrs
      • 1 Year Ago
      Incredibly, this is the second time I have heard of this same thing; a few years ago a woman hit a man, drove home to her garage with him on the windshield, apologized to him, and left him to die. I don't know what ever happened to that woman but know she was caught.
        JohnnYuma
        • 1 Year Ago
        @dedndogyrs
        I remember that story also. He was calling for help as she parked in her garage and went inside waiting for him to die..
      mntusea
      • 1 Year Ago
      Why in the hell do I read stories like this? I don't care HOW drunk or stoned or whatever you are, NO ONE drives with a man hanging on the hood of your car. Callousness does not come close to her actions. How does a sane person do that to someone??? Let her reside in the "comforts" of a 10x10 cell til she dies. She deserves nothing more!
      • 1 Year Ago
      There was more to that case than reported I guarantee it. Did they test the victims blood alcohol content?
        • 1 Year Ago
        I read some incredibly stupid stuff on the internet every day but for you to question whether a guy who was left dangling inside a windshield what his bac was is beyond comprehension,you are about as sharp as a marble,this lady deserves life without parole
        • 1 Year Ago
        Now we are playing "let's blame the victim!"
        growlrr
        • 1 Year Ago
        Does it matter? Is she any less guilty if the guy was drunk or sober???
        Lawrence Adams
        • 1 Year Ago
        Had the victim been drunk and she had stopped she might have a case. Not stopping catapulted it to murder. As far as I'm concerned anyone who drives drunk or under the influence of any drug should have additional time to serve beyond a normal sentence for an offence. We are far to lenient in this country on people who drive under the influence. Try driving in England drunk and she what happens if you are caught.
        s_hasting
        • 1 Year Ago
        You asked did they test the victims blood. The victim was not on trial. But let me give you one bit of wisdom. Just as an FYI.. One a person is dead.. they no longer have rights.. so yes they would have tested him for everything. I know this first hand after my son was killed when someone ran a stop sign. My Son was tested for everything from Over the counter meds, to Illegal drugs.. to alcohol. all were negative. What was the driver tested for? Nothing. It would have violated his civil rights to do so. His punishment was a $150.00 ticket for which he never had to go to court. All he had to do was pay it by mail and no point on his license. My punishment.. A Life forever without my 18 year old son that did not cause the crash that took his life. No chance to ever see him get married or go to college. He had a full scholarship plus a lifetime scholarship. I have learned that there are times in life that things happen that are not fair. It is all in how we learn how to cope. We can curl up into a ball and let the world pass us bye, or we can use what has happened to us and help others to heal. That has been my path in life now. I can not bring my son back. But I can make him proud of this things I do with my life.
        • 1 Year Ago
        The blood alcohol levels of the victim would only matter if she had stopped to render aid. We had a case like that in NM where a very intoxicated male stumbled out into the street and was hit my a car being driven by an attorney....but since he drove off as well it didn't matter
      PACRIMCO
      • 1 Year Ago
      When you dance, you must pay the fidller.
        Mandingo
        • 1 Year Ago
        @PACRIMCO
        or the fiddler... but more likely the bartender in this case.
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