Woman sentenced to 18 years in intoxication manslaughter case

Genevieve Pantoja enters guilty plea

SAN ANTONIO – When she ran a red light triggering a three-vehicle crash on Dec. 29, 2013, Genevieve Pantoja's blood-alcohol level was point .16. and she tested positive for marijuana, San Antonio police said.

Stacy Bridges, 41, a mother of two, was pinned in one of the vehicles involved in the crash. She was freed 20 minutes later and rushed to the  hospital. Two months later, she died from her injuries.

Pantoja pleaded guilty to intoxication manslaughter charges earlier this week and a jury heard punishment evidence and closing arguments on Wednesday in Judge Steve Hilbig's 187th District Court.

Prosecutor David Henderson noted that Pantoja has had six pre-trial violations related to substance abuse since the accident, including testing positive for marijuana just two days after the crash.

A substance abuse expert testified on Wednesday that Pantoja suffers from Poly-substance Dependence and that she suffers from Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder.

"Miss Pantoja had symptoms characteristic of someone with that disorder, including recurring nightmares and an inability to manage stress-related issues such as recalling places, smells (and) things of past traumatic events, so she has also met the criteria for Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder,"  Margarita Ochoa-Smith, an expert on substance abuse, testified.

The jury sentenced Pantoja to 18 years in prison and ordered her to pay a $10,000 fine.

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