A man convicted of felony murder in the drunken driving deaths of a woman and her daughter was sentenced to 30 years in prison on Monday.
Instead of asking for a specific sentence, prosecutors had asked the jury in the felony murder trial of Christopher Lamar to send a message.
“You have no idea how many lives you could save today by your verdict,” prosecutor Tamara Strauch told the jury during closing arguments in the punishment phase of Lamar’s trial.
A long sentence, she said, could deter others who may consider drinking and driving.
Lamar was driving drunk, investigators said, his blood alcohol level nearly three times the legal limit, when he slammed into car parked in the Interstate 10 breakdown lane near West Avenue on March 22, 2012.
Jessica Rodriguez, 28, and her daughter, Kaylee Floores, 10, were stranded in their car with a flat tire. Both were killed instantly.
Lamar was tried on felony murder charges, rather than intoxication manslaughter, which is normally the charge in such cases.
“If you lock him up and throw away the key, he will spend every day in what can only be described as the closest thing to hell,” said defense attorney Louis Martinez.