Jury acquits driver of murder in border crash - CBS News 8 - San Diego, CA News Station - KFMB Channel 8

Jury acquits driver of murder in border crash

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EL CENTRO, Calif. (AP) - A California jury has acquitted a Mexican boy of murder in the drowning of six suspected illegal immigrants but convicted him of gross vehicular manslaughter for driving a GMC Suburban into a canal in the fatal crash.

The jury in El Centro deliberated about six hours over two days before delivering its verdict Tuesday on 16-year-old Alejandro Toribio Gama, who was tried as an adult.

Attorneys say he faces a maximum sentence of about 12 years in prison. If convicted of murder, he could have been sentenced to life.

During the nearly one-month trial, a 13-year-old Mexican girl testified that she woke up underwater, unable to breathe. Her parents and 10-year-old brother died in the July 2008 crash.

Copyright 2009 The Associated Press.

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