A Skagit Valley teen pleaded guilty today to a crash that killed a father of 2 earlier this year.
The 17-year-old girl had previously pleaded not guilty. Since she is a minor, KIRO 7 will not show her face or use her name in this story.
On Tuesday, the high school senior pleaded guilty to two criminal counts: Vehicular homicide and vehicular assault while under the influence.
Prosecutors say on April 25, the teen was driving while high on marijuana, off State Route 11 in Burlington, when she struck and killed 31-year-old Riley Conard.
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Her attorney, Jason Powers, explained the reasoning for her guilty plea in court.
“She wanted to accept responsibility and help in the healing process in court and putting this behind every day,” said Powers.
Conard’s family and friends showed up in court for the guilty plea, wearing red.
“Knowing her connection in the court system, we were afraid that she would skate by,” said family friend Kathy Holt. “It’s a small amount of justice for Riley but there are winners here."
The teen's case has been moved to Snohomish County after a judge in Skagit County recused himself due to ties to the teen’s family.
Conard’s younger sister, Amy Conard, was also in the courtroom.
She said she believes the teen should have been charged as an adult.
The sentencing range for a juvenile is 15 to 36 weeks for vehicular homicide.
“Fifteen to 36 is what they are offering and that’s not fair at all,” said Amy Conard. “My brother is worth more than that. For some minor to take his life is ridiculous."
The teenage defendant is due back in court for her sentencing on November 12th.
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