'Too Difficult': Mother of Teen Killed in Key Biscayne Crash Speaks - NBC 6 South Florida

'Too Difficult': Mother of Teen Killed in Key Biscayne Crash Speaks

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    NEWSLETTERS

    NBC 6's Willard Shepard reports.

    (Published Friday, Sept. 29, 2017)

    The parents of a teen girl who was killed in a New Year's Day crash last year on Key Biscayne is speaking out for the first time as the teen who was behind wheel is closer to learning his fate.

    Isaias Medina is charged with vehicular homicide, driving without a license and reckless driving in the 2016 crash that killed 18-year old Daniela Benavides Sanmiguel.

    "This is too difficult, too difficult and I know that this is not going to be over," mother Juanita Sanmiguel told NBC 6 in an exclusive interview Friday.

    Investigators say Medina crashed a Porsche into a light pole along Crandon Boulevard and Harbor Drive on New Year's Day. Sanmiguel, a passenger in the car, was killed in the impact.

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    "I will never forget the cry of anguish my wife let out when the police arrived," Karl Lippert, Daniela's step-father, told NBC 6.

    Police said Medina was under the influence of drugs and alcohol, and was speeding. One neighbor told police the sports car raced by and then she heard a loud bang.

    "You learn to live with this pain. You learn to try to you know move on if you can say so," Juanita Sanmiguel said.

    Medina, who was 17 when the crash happened, was initially charged as a juvenile but was later charged as an adult. He will soon will find out if he's going to prison, though a judge has delayed sentencing in the case until beyond next week.

    Daniela's mom remembered her full of life.

    "She was always very positive and she was always trying to take care of the people she loved," Juanita Sanmiguel said.

    The family says they are not looking for revenge, but believe Medina does need to be punished for what happened.

    "There is always the possibility that he's given a juvenile sentence and our concern is not vengeance. We don't have that in our hearts," Lippert said. "We do think that justice is necessary here. This is the worst thing that you could do to a person. This wasn't bodily harm, personal property. This was death."

    Medina's lawyers in the their filings previously told the judge that Medina is eligible for a sentence to juvenile sanctions because he was "too young to appreciate the consequences of the offense," and said the "community doesn't need to be protected from Isaias in the form of a punitive prison sentence."

    Michael Freedland, the attorney for Daniela's parents, disagrees.

    "The message that it sends to a community when you don't sentence somebody to a crime like that commensurate with the crime is that those things are tolerated by our community and they are not tolerated by our community," Freedland said.

    The crash happened at a time when the teens on Key Biscayne had gone out with friends to have a good time.

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    "The reality is the kids don't have boundaries and the abuse of alcohol and other illegal drugs is terrible, terrible," Juanita Sanmiguel said.

    NBC 6 reached out to the attorneys for Medina but they were not able to speak Friday.

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