Jury sentences Bronson to 10 years probation

Driver blames sleep aid for wreck

Author: Paul Venema, Reporter, pvenema@ksat.com
Published On: May 15 2012 04:38:44 PM CDT   Updated On: May 16 2012 08:38:19 AM CDT

After deliberating for nearly four hours Tuesday, a jury sentenced Julie Bronson, 45, to 10 years probation.

Earlier this week, Bronson plead guilty to charges of intoxication assault and leaving the scene of an accident.

She testified that she drank five to six glasses of wine and then had taken the sleep aid Ambien on April 23, 2009, and then gone to bed.

Bronson said she had no knowledge of running down Traci Lopez and her two daughters as they did yard work in their front yard.

But a security camera video showed Bronson’s Mercedes convertible striking the three.

Eighteen-month-old Ava Lopez was the most seriously injured. She suffered extensive brain damage and continues to undergo therapy, according to her mother.

“Ava is serving Bronson’s life-sentence,” Jennifer Wiedenhoefer, a family neighbor who witnessed the accident said after the verdict was returned.

Bronson must return to court later this month for formal sentencing.

At that time, Judge Melissa Skinner has the option of ordering her to serve six months in jail as part of her probation.